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COPYRIGHT DEPOSIT. 



RANDOM RHYMES 

AND ODD NUMBERS 



Acknowledgment is made, with thanks, of permission 
to reproduce illustrations from the following periodicals : 
Co//ier's IVeek/y, Success, Life, The Century, The Saturday 
Evening Post, and Good Housekeeping. 



RANDOM RHYMES 



AND 



ODD NUMBERS 



BY 

WALLACE IRWIN 



ILLUSTRATED 



THE MACMILLAN COMPANY 

LONDON: MACMILLAN & CO., Ltd. 
1906 

All rights reserved 



LIBRARY of CONGRESS 
Two Copies Received 

NOV 13 1906 

Copyright Entry 
CLASS CK, X.Xc, No. 

/ 4 6^<5 V- 

COPY B. 



T5 3^n 



1«1 



1^3 



11 



t 



Copyright, igo6, 
By the MACMILLAN COMPANY. 



Set up and electrotyped. Published November, 1906. 



Nottoooli ^tfas 

J. S. Gushing vte Co. — Berwick & Smith Co. 

Norwood, Mass., U.S.A. 



Eo mg Wiit 

WISHING THAT MY ART WERE WORTHY THE 

MUSE WHO INSPIRES IT 

THESE RHYMES ARE AFFECTIONATELY 

DEDICATED 



CONTENTS 



To THE Average Man 

Rhymes of the Times 

The Ballad of Pilkins' Pump 

The Parlor Socialist 

An Interrupted Miracle 

The Bride's Processional 

The Luxuries of the Simple 

The Incubated Chick. (A Psychologic 

"Da Strit Pianna" 

Manners and Customs 

Charity Disconsolate 

The Reapers 

Spring in Wall Street 

A Dialogue of Disdain 

The Plouse Beautiful 

The Magic of the Moth Ball 

The Wail of a Weary Spook 

The Vicissitudes of Music 

You Never Can Tell 

Thoughts for an Easter Mornin 

The Reformation of Cohen . 

Bohemia. (A Dialogue) 

Philistia .... 

The Distinction of Dasher . 

The Probable Origin of May the First 

Servant Girls' Sonnets . 

The Auto and the Idiot 

Convenient .... 

The Progress of a Plunger . 

Ellis Island's Problem . 

The Mormon and the Moslem 



Tragedy) 



PAGE 
X 

3 

5 

12 

14 
l6 
i8 



25 
26 
27 
28 
29 
32 
33 
35 
37 
38 
40 
42 
43 
47 
51 
53 
55 
5S 
60 
62 
64 
66 



Contents 



The Bird of Thankfulness 

The Moan of an Autumn Husband 

The Poet and the Gas Man . 

Apartments in the Sky . 

A Club Meeting of Solomon's Wives 

Ye Olde Smythe Inne •. 

A Financial Serenade . 

Frenzied Furniture 

This Fever called Living 

Drifting. (With Variations) 

Natural History in the Year 3000 

Practice and Precept 

Broadway in Summer . 



Songs of the Unsuccessful 

The Voice of the Spectre 
The Man at the Desk . 
The Wrong Girl . 
State's Evidence . 



Songs without Sense 



A Song of the Orient . 

A Lie of Ancient Rome 

The Cares of a Caretaker 

The Song of the Dancing Dervishes 

A Bass Solo ..... 

The Sea Serpant. (An Accurate Desc 

The Education of Grandpa . 

The Gray Spooky-Spook 

The Haunted Elevator 

The Powerful Eyes o' Jeremy Tait 

A Leap Year Plunge 

Nile-ism ..... 

Science fur tlie Young . 

An Arabian Nightmare 

Adolphus and the Lion 

The Song of a Spooky Ship . 

Good Gunnery .... 

Trade Winds .... 



iptio 



n) 



Contents 

PAGE 

Gods and Little Fishes 159 

Who's Zoo in America ....... 161 

William Also-Ran-Dolph Hearst 161 

Thomas Fortune Ryan . . . , . . .163 
Chauncey M. Depew ....... 165 

Senator Nelson W. Oildrich . . . . . .167 

Charles Warren Fairbanks ...... 169 

Governor Samuel Whangdoodle Pennypacker . • 171 
Grover Cleveland . . . . . . . • 174 

Another Peace Conference . . . , . . .176 
The Ballad of Sagamore Hill . . . . . .179 

Julius Scizer . . . . . . . . .183 

The Ballad of Panama Ditch . . . . . -193 

A Lively Parallel . 197 

Monroe Doctrinings ........ 199 

Heroes : Perishable Goods ....... 201 

Ethics of Piracy ......... 204 

A Fable for Socialists ........ 205 

Practical Alchemists ........ 207 

Al Hale Spring ! (Dedicated to A \v C e) . . 209 

Statesmen of Futurity . . . . . . . .211 

Abdul Hamid : An Appreciation ...... 213 

The United States Senate : An Appreciation . . . 216 

A Rhyme of Pure Reason 218 

Advertisement ......... 220 

Symptoms of Greatness ....... 222 

" Provincial " ......... 224 

You May Lead a Horse to Water ..... 225 

Education .......... 227 

Song of the Unimproved ....... 229 

Mr. Shaw's Profession . . . . . . . -231 

The Heathen Devil ........ 232 

An Advertising '' Raven " . . . . . . . 234 

A Dramatic Success ........ 236 

The Mob 239 

The Confessions of a Public Question ..... 240 
Liars of All Ages 242 



Vll 



Contents 



PAGE 



Behind the Comic Mask 245 

Song for a Cracked Voice ....... 247 

From Romany to Rome ....... 248 

With a Posy in his Buttonhole ...... 250 

In a Japanese Garden . . . . . . . .252 

The Song of the Samurai ....... 254 

Among the Dead at Liao Yang ...... 256 

The Discoverers ......... 258 

Home Bound ......... 261 

A Father's Welcome 263 

Three Songs of Christmas ....... 265 

In Camp ......... 265 

At Sea 265 

In Town 266 

The Monster 267 

Clasp Hands, Ye Nations !....... 268 

The Toy Seller 270 

What Fools these Immortals Be! 273 

Child Labor in Literary Sweatshops ..... 275 

In Our Curriculum ........ 278 

The Literary Lady ........ 280 

Odes from the Cosey Corner of Ilafiz ..... 282 

The Literary Horrors Club ....... 285 

Ballade of Sour Grapes ....... 288 

A Later Adventure of Pegasus ...... 290 

The Confessions of a Genius ...... 293 

The Strike in Bookland ....... 296 

The Quest of the Local Color ...... 298 

The Bookworm Turns ........ 300 

Confessions of a Parodist ....... 302 



Vlll 



RANDOM RHYMES 

AND ODD NUMBERS 



TO THE AVERAGE MAN 

The Average Man wears the average clothes 
And the average hat on his head ; 

He eats at a table and sits on a chair 
And (normally) sleeps on a bed ; 

For he scorns the eccentric, and never would dare 

To sleep on a table or eat on a chair. 

The Average Man seeks the corner saloon 

Omeric refreshment to find ; 
But, shunning the tipple, he wanders to church 

When he is devoutly inclined — 
Nor does he expect to find whiskey or dice 
In the place that is famed for religious advice. 

The Average Man says the average things 
And sings just the average songs; 

He's deucedly fond of the Average Girl, 
For whom he unceasingly longs — 

And his vices and virtues, too many to tell. 

Are oddly at odds — but they average well. 

Statistics declare that the Average Man 
Finds the Average Woman and mates; 

That the Average Family, children all told, 
Is something like two and three-eights. 

(Though fractional children disturb and appal, 

The Average Man isn't worried at all.) 



To the Average Man 

The Average Man reads the average books, 
And sometimes he writes 'em, I hear; 

He's neither a genius, a knave, nor a fool. 
In fact he despises the queer; 

For if he departed the Average Plan 

He'd cease to be known as the A\-erage Man. 

But deep in the breast of the Average Man 

The passions of ages are swirled. 
And the loves and the hates of the Average Man 

Are old as the heart of the world — 
For the thought of the Race, as we live and we die, 
Is in keeping the Man and the Average high. 



RHYMES OF THE TIMES 



==^ 



THE BALLAD OF PILKINS' PUMP 

IR Maemaduke, Sir Marmaduke, 

Arise thee from thy book — • 
Thy daughter Gladys hath eloped 
With William Jones, the cook! 
I saw them riding down the road 
Within a one-horse shay ; 
'^ Wouldst thou sit oofing here, .Sir Marm 
With such a grudge to pay?" 

Sir Marmaduke him up hath gat 

And thrice hath smote his head, 
"Frangois de Plum, my French chafoor, 

Chaf thou mine auto red ; 
Mine owlish goggles to me bring, 

And eke my rubber coat — 
Heav'n pity them within that shay 

When Marmaduke doth mote ! " 




The auto in the road doth pant, 

A hectic sight to see. 
And there, I ween, doth gasoline 

Make odors three times three — 
In blithely leap our heroes twain. 

And as the sparks explode 
Like lightning multiplied by steam 

They scorch them down the road. 
5 



The Ballad of Pilkins' Pump 



"Si* J> 







Adown the road they niftly scorch 

Till eke and eft forsooth 
By Pilkins' Pump their speed doth slack 

And direful dawns the Truth ; 
Down-busted is the whole shebang, 

O hapless hap, alas ! 
The sparker will not spark because 

The gasoline won't gas ! 

O Marmaduke, Sir Marmaduke, 

Recall that deep-sworn D. ! 
Such godless word befitteth not 

A man of familee ; 
Francois de Plum, down on thy turn, 

Nor grind thy Gallic teeth, 
Crawl snakelike on the sward and see 

What hath gone wrong beneath ! 

And now the jocund peasantry 
Come tripping o'er the sward, 



The Ballad of Pilkins' Pump 




^^.J 

H^ V 



M'iAyi'v\/vvvwvvT-/i^W'"-*'^'V*. ' 



From every tarn, from every barn, 

From every chicken-yard, 
To snicker at the glowering Knight 

And mock his vain remorse. 
And some cry, "Git a monkey-wrench!" 

Yet others, "Git a horse!" 

"O tell me, jocund peasantry. 

Saw ye that fleeing pair?" 
"O, yes. Sir Knight, this morning bright 

We seen 'em riding fair. 
Their horse was lame and blind and tame, 

And hke molasses slow. 
'Twill be a snap to catch them, sir, 

Within that swift au-to." 



"Fudge on your words!" upspake the Knight, 
Down-swallowing a lump, 

7 



The Ballad of Pilkins' Pump 

" Swish-bingled little speed we'll make 

Tied here to Pilkins' Pump ! " 
Then forth crawls fair Franfois de Plum 

A smudge across his chin, 
"Cheer up, good Knight, 'tis fixed all right 

Jump in, Milord, jump in!" 

Then in they jump and off they jump 

A streak of red and gray, 
Down-felling all the peasantry 

That stand across their way; 




Si Scroggins' Barn and Reubensville 
At bullet speed they pass 

To Stringtown, where the Constable 
Hath strewn the road with glass. 



The Balkd of Pilkins' Pump 

O moment dire ! pnjj goes a tire, 

And in a clownish way 
Sir Marmaduke and F. de Plum 

Land in a stack of hay, 
From whence Bill Brown, the Constable, 

Our heroes handcuffed brings, 
"For scorchin' on the King's Highway 

And trespassin', be jings!" 




^ (ini^ 



Then to the Justice of the Peace 
Doth march that rustic boor 

A-dragging haughty Marmaduke 
And ditto his chafoor; 

But at the Justice of the Peace 
What waits them there, I pray? 
9 



The Ballad of Pilkin's Pump 




A lame horse drowseth by the door 
Hitched to a one-horse shay ! 

And from the Justice of the Peace — 

O be mine eyes mistook? — 
The Lady Gladys fareth forth 

And leads her darhng Cook ; 
The orange flowers are in her hair, 

(List how the Father raves !) 
The Cook in bridal weeds attired 

A marriage license waves. . 

"O humble Cook, O pastry Cook, 

(Here, chafoor, pay my fine !) 
Can I forgive this sneaking trick 

Thou dost to me and mine? 
To share my lands with such a churl 

Gadzookly I am loth — 
But hitch mine auto to your shay 

And I will bless ye both!" 

lO 



The Ballad of Pilkins' Pump 




Then homeward in the one-horse shay 

The happy couple go, 
With Marmaduke and F. de Plum 

Dragged wearily in tow. 
And as they roll, the weary Knight 

Doth sigh to his chafoor, 
"The Auto goeth swift by jerks, 

The Horse is slow but sure ! " 



II 



THE PARLOR SOCIALIST 

She'd tired of parties, bridge, and balls. 
She'd worn out theatres and calls; 
No lovers pleased her any more, 
Yachting was equally a bore. 
She tried a Yogi — he went stale ; 
So, finding every pleasure fail. 
She slapped the System on the wrist, 
And called herself a Socialist. 

So now she sits up late o' nights 
And reads what Mr. London writes. 
She's also read "The Jungle" through 
(Her father made his pile in glue). 
She doesn't think that Gorky's nice, 
But still she keeps his books on ice; 
And Bernard Shaw's peculiar twist 
She likes — for she's a Socialist. 

She gives a tea just once a week, 

With trimmings which she calls "unique" — 

Expensive orchids here and there, 

With now and then a head of hair 

Above a gentlemanly voice 

Which lisps of "Tolstoy's Higher Choice"; 

Quite "radical" becomes the gist 

Of talk — for she's a Socialist. 

12 



The Parlor Socialist 

Before a priceless inlaid desk 

She sits in costume something-esque ; 

The precious carvings in the halls, 

The gobelins upon the walls, 

Stare as she writes, from time to time, 

"Personal Property — a Crime." 

The passing butler whispers: "Hist! 

Be quiet ! She's a Socialist ! " 

Only her father chuckles, "Pooh ! " 
(He owns Amalgamated Glue). 
"Last year," he says, "it seems to me 
Her fad was genealogy; 
Next year, perhaps, she'll take a freak 
To study law or ancient Greek. 
She's so darned cute I can't resist 
Watchin' her playin' Socialist ! " 



13 



AN INTERRUPTED MIRACLE 

As summer's trail of boiling heat I wandered in the wake of 
I sought a Broadway restaurant my luncheon to partake of. 

The Waiter with great courtesy brought food both wet and 

dry, 
Then with a pose of deference assumed his station nigh. 

And when my frugal meal was done the Waiter brought the 

slip. 
I paid my score, then quietly presented him a tip. 

At which the Waiter turned away. His looks I can't describe. 
"Retain your money, sir," he said, "I cannot take a bribe! 

"I speak but true — my wants are few, I do not need the 

stuff. 
The Management is kind to me and pays me well enough. 

"Oh, keep your money, sir, I pray — or spend it as you should 
Upon some worthy charity where it will do some good." 

I watched the fellow turn away — I could not speak or 

smile. 
I mopped the dewdrops from my brow and felt my pulse 

awhile. 

14 



MANNERS AND CUSTOMS 

If you should go to Gumbo Goo 

And explorations make, 
The natives there would -welcome you 

And cut you up as steak. 
You shouldn't swear or make a fuss 

At such a demonstration — 
It's simply one of the cus-, cus-, cus-, 

The Customs of the Nation. 

If you into Somaliland 

Should happen for to stray, 
The folk would tie you foot and hand 

And take your clothes away. 
'Twere vain to kick if treated thus 

For savage recreation — 
'Tis simply one of the cus-, cus-, cus-. 

The Customs of the Nation. 

If you should visit U. S. A., 

They'll meet you at the port. 
And take your bags and trunks away 

And loot them, just for sport. 
But do not grow censorious 

At such precipitation — 
It's simply one of the cus-, cus-, cus-, 

The Customs of our Nation. 



25 



CHARITY DISCONSOLATE 

There sat upon a water plug a workman unemployed. 

I said, "Good man, here's twenty cents — now please be 

overjoyed. 
No doubt you are a worthy person very much in need, 
And so you will appreciate my charitable deed. 
So try to lead a better life and seek employment, pray." 
Now I wonder why he cursed me as I went upon my way? 

Upon the street I saw a girl with tearful face and wan 
I said, "Here is a quarter, girl, to live and thrive upon. 
Your air should be more dignified, your hat and dress more 

neat, 
And you should surely be at home instead of on the street. 
Go seek some lofty sphere of life and learn to work and 

save — " 
Now I wonder why she laughed and threw my quarter on 

the pave ? 

I visited the pauper's den and tried to soothe him there 
By mentioning his squalid rooms and dearth of light and air, 
I showed the error of his ways, how foolish he must be. 
And urged him to reform at once and pattern after me — 
And do you know that wicked man grew violent and rude ? 
Why do the lower classes show such rank ingratitude ? 



26 



THE REAPERS 

Me, and Death, and my Auto, 

Merry of mood we three. 
Went for a spin one morning, 

Friendly as friends could be. 
"Pouff! Pouff! Pouff!" said my Auto, 

And old Death winked at me. 

Me, and Death, and my Auto, 

Sped with a strength divine. 
Women, and men, and babies, 

Fell in our deadly line. 
''Hit! Hit! Hit!" said my Auto. 

"Bully!" said Death, "they're mine!" 

Me, and Death, and my Auto, 

Zipped like a shot through the town 

While I directed the lever 

And the Auto carried 'em down; 

But Death sat back on the cushions 
And whistled and waved his crown 

Me, and Death, and my Auto, 

Were stopped by a cop on the hill. 

"Ten dollars fine," said the copper, 
"For faith ye have sped to kill." 

"True," said Death, with a chuckle, 

"But the pleasure is worth the bill." 
27 



SPRING IN WALL STREET 

The long green bills are sprouting 

All down the peaceful blocks; 
A cascade falls among the walls 

And trickles through the stocks; 
The tender lambs still gamble 

On almost anything, 
While the woodland bear deserts his lair 

To sniff the scent of spring. 

The market breeze grows "active" 

And hope is "ruHng strong." 
Once more is heard the plunger-bird, 

Who lifts his cotton song — 
The song that tells the story 

Of some forgotten king 
Who played a lot, until he got 

A tumble in the spring. 

Spring wheat and corn are growing 

Around the Stock Exxhange, 
Where the shepherds keep the foolish sheep 

A-nibbUng fodder strange, 
The blithe, bucolic brokers 

A scale of prices sing, 

And this is all so natural 

You're sure that it is spring. 
28 



A DIALOGUE OF DISDAIN 

HER 

You woik ? Don't make me laff , me face is weary ! 

So you're de mutt dey've hired to bust de strike - 
Say, if de State militia wasn't leary, 

Dere'd be a passin'-out fer yours, sure Mike. 




You woikin' w'en dere's notin' fer de Union 

But nestin' on de beer kegs down de line? 

Fer nerve-tablets strong and able ye're de goods wit'out 

de label. 

So excuse me if I says, "Pooh-pooh fer mine ! " 
29 



A Dialogue of Disdain 

Say, draw yer pay ! it's time fer yer vacation. 

Back to yer tank and pull de lid down too, 
Before ye meet de Brickbat Delegation — 

I t'ink I hear yer mudder callin' you. 
Perhaps y' own de subway, wit' a contract 

To dynamite de boycotts down de line — 
Den perhaps ye're jest a slob holdin' down a union job 

And deservin' dese kind woids, "Pooh-pooh fer mine! 



HIM 



Say, Lady, ye're de Boat to Dreamland, ain't ye? 
Wit' me chust General Bumps along wit' you ! 




I wish I was a artist chust to paint ye 

A-swingin' yer harpoon to chab me t'rough. 
30 



A Dialogue of Disdain 

Becuz I am a mutt outside de Union 

Dey pets me wit' a gaspipe down de line 
And de Lizzies passin' by gits de statuary eye 

And hands me out de wheeze, "Pooh-pooh fer mine!" 

I ain't a James K. Hackett fer me beauty, 

I ain't a Chauncey Olcott fer me con ; 
But I'm de hook-and-ladders w'en me dooty 

Is dignifyin' Labor — are y' on? 
O' course it ain't becuz I need de money 

Dat I'm a-bustin' strikes along de line, 
But I'm stuck on stoppin' bricks wit' me head and dodgin' 
kicks. 

And I love yer serenade, "Pooh-pooh fer mine!" 



31 



THE HOUSE BEAUTIFUL 

She has fixed me a "smoking room," panelled in green, 

With settles "severe" of outline, 
And weathered oak tables (outrageously clean), 

And couch covers, Persian design, 
'Tis a chamber too perfect for me to employ 

The pipe's grimy fiends to invoke ; 
So I ask, with a sigh, as I put my pipe by, 

"Where the deuce is a fellow to smoke?" 

She has fixed me a library, splendid and rich, 

(Mahogany's frightful to scratch). 
There are shelves full of novels and treatises which 

She bought for their bindings (they match). 
There's a grand antique chair, at a grand antique desk, 

Which frowns at the comfort I need. 
When I ask, with a roar, at the library door, 

"Where the deuce is a fellow to read?" 

She has fixed me a living room, low-browed and deep, 

With a touch of "colonial style," 
With hand-finished doors, and such beautiful floors. 

That you shudder their sheen to defile. 
Such "careless simplicity" neatly arranged, 

Mere lounging could never forgive. 
So I moan as I fade from the "living room's" shade, 

"Where the deuce is a fellow to live?" 
32 



THE WAIL OF A WEARY SPOOK 

It was a weary-looking ghost 

That sat beside my bed. 
Apparently he was a most 
Dissatisfied and peevish ghost, 

And this was what he said : — 

"My duty is to answer calls 

For many mediums, 
To nightly visit public halls 
To tumble chairs and tap on walls 

And play on horns and drums, 

"To enter seances and meet 
With folks I do not know, 
And when my business they entreat, 
In spectral whispers to repeat, 
'I am your brother Jo!' 

"And when I flitter to the Hub 

There's little rest for me. 
Some dotty Psychic Research Club 
Begins my character to drub 

Till I would fain be free. 

"And Minot Savage seems to look 

Upon me as a swiper 
As he remarks, 'Come hither. Spook! 
35 



The Wail of a Weary Spook 

Please take this package and this book 
Across to Mrs. Piper.' 

"From Beacon Hill to Panama 

I'm billed to do my stunts, 
From Steubenville to Omaha, 
From Maine to Philadelphia — 
Full forty towns at once. 

"In life I was a quiet cuss 

Who led a quiet life; 
I little thought it could be thus, 
That death could be so strenuous. 

The grave so full of strife. 

"O Mister, don't you want a spook 

To work about the home, 
To mind the door, to help the cook. 
To dust your hearth and ingle-nook 

And haunt you in the gloam? 

"O sir!" — he cried, but that was all, 

For with a sad sobriety 
He vanished quickly through the wall 
To 'tend a far-off hurry-call 

In some Research Society. 



36 



THE VICISSITUDES OF MUSIC 

When Music, heavenly maid ! was young, 
(Collins, forgive my stolen strain,) 

Pan-shepherd from his reeds outflung 
To lake and stream the wild refrain 

Which set the nimble nymphs a-dancing 

And even the bearded flocks to prancing. 

When Music, heavenly maid ! was young 
Goddess and priestess fair she stood 

And all the mysteries she sung 
Entranced the sacred Sisterhood ; 

Pure Helicon and Delphic caverns 

She graced — and entered not the taverns. 

When Music, maid, was middle aged 

A showman carried her away 
And she was dramatized and staged 

And made to caper through the play, 
Threading her sweet, ethereal dances 
To please the Public's febrile fancies. 

When Music, heavenly jade ! was old 
Her lovely gifts of fire and air 

Unto a restaurant she sold 
To sanctify the bill of fare, 

To soothe the fat and greasy glutton 

Between the oysters and the mutton. 
37 



YOU NEVER CAN TELL 

" You think you do — but you don't." 

— Bernard Shaw. 

In the touch-and-go of the daily show 

Where the virtues are highly prized, 
We've a conscience sweet with the mild conceit 

That we're terribly civilized ; 
And we're looking down with a Jove-like frown 

On the Turk or the Hottentot, 
While we spread our wings like the perfect things 

Which we think we are — but we're not. 

This nation of ours, as it tells the Powers, 

Is the land of the free and the brave; 
In God we trust, and we're awfully just, 

And we haven't the sign of a slave. 
No peasants toil on our chainless soil, 

As labor the sons of the Czar; 
For we're not- in the hooks of the tierce Grand Dukes — 

We think we're not — but we are. 

There's no great span 'twixt the Congressman 
And the humblest Mick in the ditch ; 
38 



You Never Can Tell 

We see no charms in a coat of arms, 
And we don't bow down to the rich. 

We never graze with a thankful gaze 
In the fields of the parvenu ; 

We never stare at a milHonnaire — 
We think we don't — but we do. 



39 




^.^^''Mpm^^m, 




THOUGHTS FOR AN EASTER MORNING 

Hail, serene hour of the modiste and miHiner, 

Financial ruin and Paris creation, 
When the suave Tempter of Women is fillin' 'er 

Head with the seed of demoralization ! 
Spring, you declare, brings the lilies and roses — 

Don't rub it in, friend; I know about that. 
/ am the bankrupt who paid for the posies 

Spring has arrayed on her Ladyship's hat. 



Easter and bonnets ! the subject is stale enough. 

Annual rhapsodies flying through distance; 
Yet there's excuse for them, since we know well enough 

Easter and bonnets are still in existence. 
Shop windows quiver with feminine chatter, 

Sidewalks are blocked where the darlings converse 
When the French milliner, mad as a hatter. 

Flaunts her "designs" — with designs on my purse. 



Ding-dong the bell, and we're going to services. 

World and his Wife and the Dev — I beg pardon ! 
4^ 



Thoughts for an Easter Morning 

Adam, in broadcloth, a trifling bit nervous is; 

Eve, on her tresses, is wearing the Garden ! 
Brazen and bright, near the saintly procession, 

Stands a new milliner's sign — can she see ? 
And if she can, will she make the confession? 

"MLLE. SATAN, LATE STYLES FROM PAREE." 



41 



THE REFORMATION OF COHEN 

Cohen was a Nihilist 

In the humble day, 
When he worked at sorting rags 

Down on Bowery way. 

Cohen was an Anarchist 

All the years that he 
Held a job as sweat-shop boss 

On a salary. 

Cohen was a Communist, 

(Very mild of tone) 
When he had a factory 

All his very own. 

Cohen was Republican, 

Mammon's advocate, 
When he joined his factory 

To a syndicate. 

Cohen, now a Royalist, 
Says the Upper Classes 

Ought to hold the sovereign power 
To control The Masses. 
42 



BOHEMIA 

(A Dialogue) 

Scene : A ^S-cent table d'hote. Pierre and Achille vis-a-vis 
over a dappled tablecloth. 

Pierre 

Yes, I have read your verse, Achille. 
You show not thought alone — you feel, 
Such symbolism, and again 
A spice of — I might say Verlaine ; 
But with new spirit and new tone — 
A style and manner all your own. 
Where did you sell it? Has it been 
Yet pubhshed in a magazirte? 

A chille 

A magazine ! What can it do ? 

Discerning editors are few, 

I hate the hypocritic smirk 

With which they all reject my work. 

I write no longer for the press — 

Pierre 

Ah, editorial sightlessness ! 
The merest trash would serve their ends — 
43 



Bohemia 

They buy the poems of their friends. 
There's a small matter which — 

Achille {feverishly) 

— - Ahem, — ■ 
Your paintings, let us talk of them. 

They're marvels. 

Pierre 

Here's a thing of mine 
Which I regard as rather fine. 

Achille 

Such atmosphere ! such breadth of line ! 
Such daring treatment ! (Pass the wine.) 
Force with imagination blent. 
Let's see — what does it represent ? 

Pierre 

Why do you hold it upside down ? 

Achille 

Ah, pardon ! — thus. Such blue, such brown ! 
You've sold it? 

Pierre 

Thousand thunders, no ! 
See how the Shylock dealers grow 
To riches while the buyers cease 
To recognize the masterpiece. 
44 



Bohemia 

Achille 

Quite so. Their fat wits all demand 
Cheap art that they can understand. 

Pierre {suggestively) 
Real Art must starve. 

Achille {nervously) 

Too true, Pierre. 

Pierre 

Speaking of starving, that affair — 
That loan — I need it very much. 

Achille {aside as he rises to go) 

I thought he'd try to make a touch. 

{aloud) 
Yes, yes — I know. But fates are such — 

{reaches for hat) 

Pierre 
Why haste, companion? Must you go? 

Achille 

Even a genius works at times. 
I have a stirring mood for rhymes. 
Good-night, dear friend. [Exit. 

45 



Bohemia 

Pierre 

Alas, good-night ! 
(finishing the claret which Achille has left) 
My dearest curse be on his pate — 
I'll drink his wine at any rate. 



46 



PHILISTIA 

Scene: A comfortable literary atmosphere. Discov- 
ered a Novelist, a Short Story Writer, and a Bust 0} 
Shakespeare. 

Novelist 
What of your Art — how does it sell ? 

Short Story Writer 
Immense ! I'm doing very well. 

Novelist 
You're still in quatrains, I suppose? 

S. S. W. 

Oh, mercy, no ! I'm doing prose. 
Sonnets have gone from bad to worse — 
The market's very dead in verse. 

Novelist 

Magazine fiction, I have heard, 
Has gone to par, — five cents a word. 

S. S. W. 
Five cents, you say? Well, that's so-so — 
I sell for downright sums, you know. 
It pays the best. 

47 



Philistia 

Novelist 

What is your rate ? 

5. S. W. 

Oh, that is dif!icuk to state. 

I study first my editor 

And find how much he's ready for. 

How did your latest book progress? 

Novelist 

Artistic triumph — great success. 
Sold sixty thousand, more or less, 
Before the leaves were off the press. 

5. S. W. 

What gave it such a splendid shove? 
Historical? 

Novelist 

No. Mostly Love. 
Love is the line of goods that takes. 
It sells, my boy, like griddle cakes. 
The problem novel's seen its day 
And business fiction doesn't pay; 
No more the brisk and steady sales 
For wonder or adventure tales. 
But give 'em Love, and if it's neat, 
You'll move from Grub to Easv Street. 



Philistia 

s. s. w. 

I can't progress as fast as you 
Selling my stories as I do. 

Novelist 

A royalty is much the best. 

It works, you know, while you're at rest; 

And if you have a master hand 

To fill the general demand, 

The publisher grows confident 

And lifts your divvy ten per cent. 

S. S. W. 

That's fair. I think I'll make a bluff 
At turning out your line of stuff. 

Novelist 

Sell while the market's ruling strong — 
It's very apt to slump ere long. 

5'. S. W. (consulting watch) 

It's four o'clock — I'll have to go. 
My auto's at the door, you know. 

Novelist 
Come out next week and see my yacht. 

S. S. W. 
Thanks ! 

[Exeunt in opposite directions. 

E 49'- 



Philistia 



Bust 0} Shakespeare 



Lights of Avon and Great Scott ! 
Do these men deal in coal — or what? 
For Men of Letters, seemeth me, 
They handle Figures mightily. 



SO 



THE DISTINCTION OF DASHER 

Dasher at college was "brilliant," they say 
Rattling good fellow, the best of his day. 
Free with his money and quick with a joke, 
'Varsity pitcher and 'varsity stroke, 
Lovable chap to a certain degree, — 
Prominent Yalceton Man, '8;^. 

Dasher invented the "yippy-yip yell." 
(Dasher was wild, as he's willing to tell.) 
Easily marked to stand out from the ranks, 
He was the leader of rushes and pranks. 
Twanged a first mandolin, sang on the Glee, — 
Prominent Yalceton Man, '83. 

Dasher was chummy with Harry and Tom, 
Dasher's flirtations enlivened the Prom. 
He had a story and, Jove, it was gay ! 
No one in college could tell it his way 
All of the campus raconteurs agree, — 
Prominent Yalceton Man, '83. 

Dasher's at work for his living to-day. 

Hair somewhat thin, — a suspicion of gray. 

Dasher's sharp wits have grown plodding and slow. 

Adding up figures for Someone & Co. 

No one to laugh at his jokes, — can this be 

Prominent Yalceton man, ^8t^ ? 

51 



The Distinction of Dasher 

Dasher's old mates have succeeded so far. 
Smith deals in copper, Jones edits "The Star," 
White tried for Congress, defeated by Brown, 
Black runs a railroad, a church, and a town. 
Dasher's one claim to distinction must be, — 
"Prominent Yalceton Man, '83." 



52 



THE PROBABLE ORIGIN OF MAY THE FIRST 

Perhaps it was a primal curse inherited from Adam, 

Whom Eve in all her beauty couldn't placate, 
When he remarked on May the first: "We must be going, 
madam ; 

Our lease is up, and it is time to vacate." 
And so a busy moving-van backed up, so runs the fable, 

And soon with Adam's household goods was laden. 
With fig-leaves, apples, furniture, — including Cain and 
Abel — 

And they were off to seek another Aiden. 

Perhaps it is a tendency inherited from Noah, 

Who spake unto his neighbors disapproving : 
"By jinks, I'm goin' anywhar, from Naples to Samoa! 

I don't care much, so long as I'm a-moving." 
So then he gathered cats and gnats and elephants and 
camels. 

And stuffed the Ark with zoologic lumber. 
And when at last on Ararat he set his household trammels. 

He sent out cards, "Please note the change of number." 

Perhaps we merely got it from our grand old Pilgrim Fathers, 
Who packed their trunks when spring was in its gay 
flower, 
Braved Indians and pumpkin pies and other heathen bothers 
And called their ancient moving-van The Mayflower. 
53 



The Probable Origin of May the First 

And so on May-day — let's suppose — on Plymouth Rock 
they tented, 

With tables, bedsteads, kitchenware, and pew-sets ; 
They neither rested night nor day until at last they'd rented 

Suburban homes all over Massachusetts. 

Or maybe old Columbus on his voyages first discovered 

May moving in the Caribbean Ocean ; 
Or thoughts of new apartments in his restless bosom hovered 

When first for islands strange he took the notion. 
'Twas May when Galileo said about the earth's rotation : 

"The world do move ! " — howe'er the thought revolts us, 
Month of domestic interchange, soap-suds, and decoration. 

The world do move — and goodness, how it jolts us ! 



54 



SERVANT GIRL SONNETS 

I 

Why am I sad on this delightful eve, 

I, in the prime of youth, the flush of brawn ? 
Oh, woe ; oh, tush ! our Lady Cook has gone — 

Aye, with her bag and baggage taken leave ! 

She was not fair to look on, yet I grieve 
As broken-hearted droops the stricken fawn — 
Where are your two weeks' notice, Bridget Bawn, 

Which your credentials promised, I believe? 

But patience. Wife — be brave before your sorrow. 

(Come hither, pray, and Hght the kitchen stove) 
We'll go and hire another "jewel" to-morrow 

From Bink's Employment Bureau's treasure trove. 
I'll take my food to-night from your fair hand. 
(Don't turn the gas range on hke that — good land !) 

II 

There is no Servant Problem, that I feel, 
To any housewife wiUing to be kind, 
To help the Cook, to carry coal and mind 

The bell, and when the servant's tired, to peel 

Potatoes, and with sweet, unselfish zeal 
To teach the housemaid epigrams refined. 
To wash the dishes with devotion blind 

And help the waitress as she serves the meal. 
55 



Servant Girl Sonnets 

The trouble with you women is that you 
Expect too much for eighteen dollars per; 

You're looking for a lady who will do 

The sordid household jobs you ask of her, 

Without consulting her innate desire. 

(Gladys, those mashed potatoes are on fire !) 

Ill 

At Bink's Employment Bureau in a row 

E'en now I see the eligibles stand, 

"Jewels" all of them — the prices they command 
Assure their precious values that I know ; 
But this one's not a laundress, t'other's slow, 

The next too dehcate to lend a hand 
To beating rugs, and adds in accents grand, 
"If ye don't kape no coachman, Oi don't go ! " 

From out this haughty band dost think that we 
Can lure one Angel to our humble hearth. 

To act as chaperon for you and me 

And make our home a heaven upon earth. 

To ease awhile our lives with sorrow goaded ? 

(Gladys, look out ! Great Scott, that stove's exploded ! !) 



IV 

Ah, Fate has served us many a bitter dole ! 

Do you remember Mary Ann McGee, 

Who at a dinner party scalded me 
And served us pretzels with the soup, good soul? 

56 



Servant Girl Sonnets 

Do you remember Dinah Jones, whose whole 
Life was a blunder, varying in degree. 
Who used your Dresden chocolate pot for tea 

And brought on salad in a finger bowl ? 

Do you recall — but why the details give 

Of that from which we fain would find release ? 

Without a Cook, alas ! we cannot live 

Yet with a Cook we cannot Hve — in peace. 

Oh, for a lodge in some vast forest, Wife, 

To dine on herbs and live the Simple Life ! 



57 



THE AUTO AND THE IDIOT 

The Auto and the Idiot 

Came moting on the scene. 
The air was full of violets 

And odors fresh and clean — 
And this was odd, because, you see, 

Their fuel was gasoline. 

"O glory!" cried the Idiot, 
"We're forging right ahead. 

If I had wheels upon my feet 
I'd also run," he said. 

The Auto moaned, "It is a shame 
Your wheels are in your head ! " 

The Auto and the Idiot 

Ran bang into a fence. 
"To steering," said the Idiot, 

"I'm giving thought intense" — 
And that was odd, because, you know, 

He hadn't any sense. 

Adown a pleasant country lane 
They journeyed fast and far 

Until they spied a gentleman 
A-smoking his cigar. 

"I'll hit him square," the Auto puffed, 
"And minimize the jar." 
58 



The Auto and the Idiot 

Across the quiet gentleman 
Right merrily they sped. 

"Pedestrians should look alive," 
The busy Auto said — 

And this remark was odd, because 
The gentleman was dead. 



59 



CONVENIENT 

(Members of the Automobile Club of America have gone before 
New York magistrates and asked that five bonds be issued each 
member in advance "to avoid the inconvenience of arrest.") 

"Magistrate, magistrate, give me some bonds," 

Politely remarked the chauffeur, 
"For I'm going to race at a terrible pace, 

And, if I kill somebody, sir, 
I don't want to hang around wasting my time 
In sleepy old prisons, accused of a crime." 

"Magistrate, magistrate, give me some bonds," 

The burglar remarked with a sob, 
"For, sir, to be frank, I've me eyes on a ban 

Which I think it me duty to rob. 
So give me some bonds, for I timidly quail 
From the gross inconvenience of staying in jail 

"Magistrate, magistrate, give me some bonds," 

The murderer said to the judge, 
"For I've loaded my gun and I'm out for some fun 

And I'm anxious to settle a grudge — ■ 
But if I'm arrested, I want to be foxy 
And go on a trip while they try me by proxy." 
60 



Convenient 

So the magistrate, being a good-natured man, 

Who hated all gloomy delay, 
Just hustled his best to grant each request 

And send 'em all happy away. 
"For surely," he said, "it's no less than a crime 
To play fast and loose with a busy man's time." 



6i 



THE PROGRESS OF A PLUNGER 

Smith, the financier, 

As a boy worked meekly 
In a Wall Street firm — 

$7 weekly. 
•Manager of house 

Said, "You're shrewd and tidy- 
I'll promote you, Smith. 

Move your desk on Friday." 
(Smith resided then 

In a cottage pretty, 
On a modest street 

Out in Jersey City.) 

II 

Five years, seven, pass. 

Smith is still advancing; 
Now as Treasurer 

Spends his time financing. 
Salary's increase 

Tastes as sweet as honey, 
For he always finds 

He can "use the money." 
(Name of Jersey town 

From his cards is hauled off. 
Now his address is 

"J. P. Smith, the Waldorf.") 
62 



The Progress of a Plunger 

III 

Now great dreams of wealth 

Set Smith's breast a-riot, 
Lots of cash in sight — 

Takes some on the quiet. 
Poker, ponies, stocks, 

Then a tangle silly 
With a fair but wise 

Actress vaudeville-y. 
To the Wall Street firm 

Comes awakening ruder. 
Next morn Smith has moved, 

(Residence Bermuda). 

IV 

Vain is Smith's fond dream 

On the isles to fatten. 
Escort comes one day. 

Takes him to Manhattan. 
Smith is dragged to court, 

Counsel grows exacting, 
Giving problems in 

Adding and subtracting. 
Poor arithmetic — 

Clutch of law is closening. 
(Smith has moved again: 

Residence now "Ossining.") 



63 



ELLIS ISLAND'S PROBLEM 

(Due to the bargain steerage rate 4,119 foreign paupers have been 
landed in New York within five days, with 8,000 more on the way.) 

Down the greasy gang-plank 

See the motley pack — 
Nothing in the pocketbook, 

Tatters on the back 
Pauper, cripple, criminal. 

Halt and blind and slow — 
Has Uncle Sammy room enough to give 'em all a show ? 

Citizens of Babel 

Shipped from every clime, 
Aliens in look and speech, 

Brothers in their grime, 
Rag-tag and nondescript, 

Mark them as they go — 
Has Uncle Sammy room enough to give 'em all a show? 

Crime, disease, and wretchedness 

Of a hundred lands; 
All a world's incompetence 

Dumped upon our hands. 
Are our furrows ready 

Such a seed to sow — 
Has Uncle Sammy room enough to give 'em all a show? 
64 



Ellis Island's Problem 

In our tainted sweat shops 

Where the pauper comes, 
In our reeking tenements, 

In our festering slums, 
Shall we add these thousands 

To the overflow — 
Has Uncle Sammy room enough to give 'em all a show ? 



65 




THE MORMON AND THE MOSLEM 

(a patter of competitive polygamy) 



Peace be with you ! hear the tale 
Told by those in Jaffa Jail, 
Told of Fuj ben Alkali, 
Honored skeik of Alibi 

In the desert Sahara. 
Allah, illah, benji, kahni 
Sorrow is the fate of man 

In the region of Boukhara ! 

Harum Skarum Mahmoud Jig, 
Known as Fuj ben AlkaH, 

Dwelt in peace beneath the fig 
And the contemplative sky 

Of the desert's watered places. 

Allah prospered his oasis 
66 



The Mormon and the Moslem 




Making it a Seventh Heaven ; 
And his wedded wives were seven. 
Passing sweet was the polyg — 
Amous state of Mahmoud Jig. 

Mahmoud played the pious tabor, 
Mahmoud squeaked the pious fife, 

Leaving all unpleasant labor 
Unto each respective wife. 
One could knit and one could sew. 
One could knead the yielding dough. 
One, unused to household trammels, 
Groomed and fed the placid camels; 
One wove Orient rugs unique, 
(Duly sold as "real antique,") 
But the Seventh Wife was set 
Far apart, good Mahmoud's pet. 

She was trim. 

Rather slim, 
Eyes a pretty turquoise blue. 

Never pettish, 

Seldom frettish, 
67 



The Mormon and the Moslem 

Only spoke when spoken to. 
Kismet boo! zembiir mill! 
Allah sent the miracle — 
Bah, hah! 




One bright morn as ^Mahmoud bent 
O'er his prayers before his tent, 
His attention was arrested by a cleric-looking gent 
Black of coat and tall of hat 
Who upon a camel sat. 
Closely filing in the rear 
Seven camels did appear, 
68 



The Mormon and the Moslem 

Each one bearing on his back a 
Faded lady in alpaca. 
Quoth the Moslem in alarm 
"Come ve here for weal or harm?" 




Quoth the stranger with a smile, 
As he doffed his silken tile, 
"I am Prophet Smoot McGee, 
Late cf Great Salt Lake, U. T., 
And these ladies whom ypu see 
Are my seven better halves." 

(Here all seven bowed discreetly 
As they drew their dresses neatly 
Round their rather slender calves.) 
69 



The Mormon and the Moslem 

"God is good I" the Moslem cried, 

"As is writ in Al Koran, 
'Marry early, marry often — 

Heaven bless thee, little man!'" 

So the IMormon caravan 

Lingered near the watered places, 
Pitched their camp and lit their lamp 

On the Moslem's neat oasis. 



11 

Peace be with you ! Hear the tale 
Told by thieves in Jaffa Jail, 
As they squat upon the floor 
And their Hookhas bubble o'er. 
As the water-bottles purr 
\\\{\\ the smoke of nard and mynh 

On the desert of Sahara. 
''Allah, illaJi, bcnji, kaliii! 
Sorrow is the fate of man 

In the region of Boukhara!" 

Saintly Prophet Smoot McGee 

Called upon the Moslem often, 

Broke his bread and drank his tea, 

Mahmoud's pagan heart to soften, 

Oft explaining in a wary 

Way, to overcome aversion. 

How he'd come, a missionary, 
70 



The Mormon and the Moslem 

For the ultimate conversion 
Of the Arab, Turk, and Persian. 
Come to lead them all by kindness 
From their heathen ways of bUndness. 

"If you'd save your soul from Tophet 
Come to Utah ! " cried the Prophet. 

''Be an elder or a prior, 

Come and lead the Mormon choir. 
Learn each doxy, law, and tenet ; 

Or, as soon as you desire. 

We will send you to the Senate." 

But the Moslem was obdurate, 

And the words were lost to him. 
(He'd an eldest son, a curate 

In the Mosque of Ispayim, 
So his faith was deeply grounded.) 
But he sat surprised, astounded. 
When the Mormon's exhortation 
Caused a most profound sensation 
Midst the wives of Alkali, 
Who regarded Smoot McGee 
With a look of fascination 
Which the fond but jealous eye 
Of the Orient cannot see 

Without thoughts of strangulation. 
And the Moslem's gaze grew green 
When his favorite was seen 
With a guidebook, small but pretty, 
Titled "Seeing Salt Lake City." 
71 



The Mormon and the Moslem 

'Twas the early hour of prayer. 

Mahmoud rose from slumbers snug, 
Very neatly spread his rug 

Toward the East, when — 

Hully chee ! 

Where was Prophet Smoot McGee 

With his wives and dromedaries? 




And, by Islam's golden houses, 

Where were Mahmoud 's seven spouses? 

Flown awav like freed canaries ! 



Harum Skarum Mahmoud Jig 
Known as Fuj ben Alkali, 

Stood awhile beneath the fig 
With a spy-glass to his eye. 
72 



The Mormon and the Moslem 

In the distance he could just 
See a fading cloud of dust 
As the Great Elopement prest 
Toward the Wild and Woolly West, 
Where the Customs House collects 
For such "personal effects." 
And his clouded glass could see 
In the distance — was it she ? 

She was slim, 

Rather trim — 
He was sure her eyes were blue, 

On the knee 

Of McGee — 
Acting quite coquettish, too ! 

Harum Skarum Mahmoud Jig 

Stood awhile with vacant stare; 
Then with pious impulse big 

Fell he on his knees in prayer. 
"Allah, when thy blasts begin 

They are deadlier than knives. 
Allah knows it is a sin 

To have more than seven wives. 
Yet our markets are beset 

By the Yankee's soft persuasion; 
Night and morning we are met 

By American Invasion. 
Even in Polygamy 

Rival syndicates arise — 
Helpless to compete are we 

With the Yankee enterprise ! 
73 



The Mormon and the Moslem 

Kismet boo! zembur mul! 
Allah sent the miracle — 
Bah, bahr' 




74 



THE BIRD OF THANKFULNESS 

My pious Pilgrim grandpapa, 

Dun as his life and murky; 
He frowned on mirth and fol-di-ra, 
He hated carnal joys — but, ah, 

He couldn't hate the turkey ! 

He loathed a witch with loathing grim. 

And oft he'd drown a tankful; 
His days were hard and dark and dim, 
But when the plate was passed to him. 
He'd murmur, "Lord, I'm thankful!" 

And so he sat on Plymouth Rock 

And like a monarch feted ; 
And there he put a chopping block, 
Where many a gallant turkey cock 

Was soon decapitated. 

"For babes," he said, "may go to — well, 

A realm of sulphurous savor; 
All flesh is base, so preachers tell 
But only piety can dwell 

In meat of such a flavor. 

"And for this day gay youth and lass 
May have the Pilgrim's blessing. 

75 



The Bird of Thankfulness 

Good Brother Edwards, kindly pass 
The pumpkin pie and crahb'ry sass — 
And help yourself to dressing." 

Gone are old Mather's laws of blue, 

His garments sad and murky. 
The goblins and the witches, too, 
He took with him when he withdrew — 
Praise heaven, he left the turkey ! 



76 



THE MOAN OF AN AUTUMN HUSBAND 

She's been away the summer through at Narragansett 

Pier — 
It's been a case of clothes, clothes, clothes, throughout the 

jocund year, 
But, now the season's growing old and I have sighed "That's 

all ! " 
She says she wants a walking suit that's suitable for fall. 

It's summer for old Adam's sons to moil and toil in town 
While Eve's fair daughters seek the sea to get a coat of brown ; 
And it is right that man should pay her debts, both great and 

small — 
Until she wants a walking suit that's suitable for fall. 

I've sent her twenty trunks of clothes (or so it seems to me). 
And yet she says she hasn't got a costume fit to see, 
That she must wait, and that she can't return to town at all 
Until she gets a walking suit that's suitable for fall. 

Oh, would I were in Eden's bower with naught to worry me 
But plucking leaves for gentle Eve from our ancestral tree, 
And when the autumn leaves came in, the effort would be 

small 
To find for her a russet suit quite suitable for fall. 

77 



The Moan of an Autumn Husband 

Alas for all the rights of men held captive to the town ! 
The more you dress a woman up, the more she'll dress you 

down. 
Yet when she's back, you somehow feel it's worth it, after all, 
So let her have the walking suit that's suitable for fall. 



78 



THE POET AND THE GAS MAN 

A Poet sat with aching head, 

His fancies all a-teeter, 
What time a Gas Man came and said : 

"I want to see your meter." 

"Oh, Gas Man, Gas Man, answer me — 
My lines are long and tractile — 

Which kind of meter would you see, 
A spondee or a dactyl? " 

"No doubt your goods are very neat," 

RepHed the churl cherubic, 
"I ask for no poetic feet — 

The kind I want are cubic. 

"Your method, Poet, has its faults, 

However deep or clever. 
Your flowery meter sometimes halts, 

But mine goes on forever." 

"My fair muse burns," the Poet cried, 
"While soulless magnates lord it." 

"Well, let 'er burn," the fiend replied, 
"Your meter will record it. 
79 



The Poet and the Gas Man 

"You bid for fame," exclaimed the wight, 

"In phrases well inflected — 
Though monthly bills are all I write, 

They seldom are rejected." 

"You have no soul," the Poet sniffed, 

Toward his inkwell leaning. 
"The field of fancy ain't my gift," 

The Gas Man said with meaning — 

"I lack that high poetic thrill 

Which you call inspiration, 
But wait — I bet you'll say my bill 

Shows fine imagination." 



80 



APARTMENTS IN THE SKY 

(" There are flats and apartment houses in heaven," says the Rev. 
Ezra T. Sandford.) 

I AM growing wan and peaked, 

I am fading fast away; 
But I cannot go to heaven 

Till the sunny first of May. 
There are no apartments vacant, 

I must lease them when I can, 
And I have not made arrangements 

For a golden moving- van. 

Oh, the Future's full of questions 

Which the spirit scarce can brook : 
Who the angel to tend door-bells? 

Who the devil to be cook? 
Will old Lucifer obliging 

From his gas plant furnish light? 
Will they run a dummy waiter 

Down to Hades every night? 

I can see the angels moving 

Up and down the golden street, 
Signs: "To Let, Apartments Furnished, 

Modern Service, Furnace Heat." 
Angels take the elev^ator, 

Call the Janitor in vain, 
Do not hke the decorations. 

Sniff and go away again. 
G 8i 



Apartments in the Sky 

There will be celestial grocers 

For celestial appetite, 
There will be an angel laundry 

To "do up" our robes of white. 
Say, oh, say, can this be heaven 

With its suppositious joys ? 
Driver, take me down to Hades, 

Where I'll camp out with the boys! 



82 



A CLUB MEETING OF SOLOMON'S WIVES 

A woman's club meeting of Solomon's wives 

Was quite an important atTair; 
It brought a "fresh interest" into their lives 

And drove Mr. S. to despair. 
They had "deep discussion" on things of the hjur, 

And argued on topical lines 
Till they made such a racket you'd hear them all clack it 

As far as King Solomon's mines. 

The first Mrs. S., quite a dowager stout, 

Presided at three each club day, 
When she always began, "Let us try to find out 

What Kipling intended in 'They' — 
And let's have a paper on Dooley and James 

And The Ethical Conscience of Poe, 
On Byron and Shelley and Marie Corelli — 

Such topics are helpful, you know." 

Then a blond Mrs. S. shyly rose to her feet, 

And said, showing symptoms of scare 
As she fitfully read from a typewritten sheet, 

"I haven't had time to prepare — 
The man Henry James — I mean Poe — let me see — 

I think he was born in the year — • 
I'm horridly nervous — sweet heaven preserve us, 

I've got the wrong paper — oh, dear ! " 
83 



A Club Meeting of Solomon's Wives 

Then a dark Mrs. S. said, with withering scorn, 

"How can such a talk be presented 
When Byron and Shelley have never been born 

And Kipling is not yet invented ? 
We have Hebrew poets as great as that Poe — 

Mrs. President, I have the floor — 
I think it much harder — " Here the chair rapped for order 

And the meeting merged into a roar. 

Thus dropping the poets there rose a debate 

'Twixt feminine disputants able, 
'Midst witty retorts and finance reports. 

Till the question was laid on the table. 
But when a refreshment committee was formed, 

The talk grew as mild as could be. 
Sweet quiet returned, and the meeting adjourned 

To Solomon's temple for tea. 



84 



YE OLDE SMYTHE INNE 

"Smith's Hotel," as I recall, was doing rather shabbily. 

"City tourisis" going by considered it with scorn; 
The rooms, they said, were rather small, the clapboards, 
painted drabbily. 

Let in too much moisture to be other than forlorn. 
William Smith, proprietor, observing this distressingly. 

Said one day, "I guess it's time for bizness to begin;" 
Got some paint and lumber out and labored quite caress- 
ingly 

Making up the antique sign, "Ye Olde Smythe Inne." 

Scarcely was the shingle out than, with enthusement franti- 
cal. 
Tally-hos and motor-cars came flocking to the door. 
Cries of "What a cunning place!" "So charmingly ro- 
mantiral I" 
(No one mentioned musty halls or rat-holes in the floor.) 
People slept in stuffy rooms and said that they were "quaint" 
enough. 
Never flinched at soggy pies or coffee pale and thin. 
Spoke no word of creaky chairs or porches lacking paint 
enough, 
Went to town and boasted of "Ye Olde Smythe Inne." 

Years passed by, and William Smith, though wealthy to 
rotundity, 
Wasted nothing on repairs — but stil! the people came. 
85 



Ye Olde Smythe Inne 

Known as " an historic spot ' ' — result of Smith's profundity — 
Smythe's became a "landmark" and was heralded to 
fame. 

Finally, when William died, lest vandals might destroy it all, 
Some one bought the dear Antique, preserving all therein ; 

Set a brass plate in the door, where people may enjoy it all, 
Labelled for posterity, "Ye Olde Smythe Inne." 

Names, discreetly uttered, often prejudice a jury, oh; 

Anything that's second-hand an audience will win 
Through its very shabbiness, if it is labelled "Curio" — 

Hence this truthful story of "Ye Olde Smythe Inne." 



86 



A FINANCIAL SERENADE 

If all the earth were steel, love, 

And all the sea were oil, 
And all the sky were stocks, love, 

And Rockefeller's spoil; 
If chunks of purest gold, love, 

Like pebbles fledged the sea. 
What would become of you, love, 

What would become of me? 

The stocks up in the sky, love, 

Well watered would remain. 
Till they were tightly squeezed, love, 

Then gee ! how it would rain. 
The steel might set the oil, love, 

To burning all about. 
But the water from the stocks, love. 

Would fall and put it out. 

If all that steel were yours, love. 

And all that oil were mine. 
How long would I require, love, 

To grab that share of thine ? 
In vain you'd turn your stocks, love. 

To bonds of wondrous size — 
I'd make you sell the earth, love, 

Ere you could Morganize. 
87 



A Financial Serenade 

• 

But all the earth's not steel, love, 

And all the sea's not oil; 
That's all that keeps John D., love, 

From cornering the soil; 
That's all that keeps John D., love, 

From running sky and sea — 
And it's fortunate for you, love, 

It's fortunate for me. 



DRIFTING 

(with variations) 

As I float 

In my boat, 
Drifting, drifting from the shore. 

Prone I He 

'Neath the sky, 
Idly dreaming, nothing more. 

In this Fairyland of play. 

City's worries far away. 
What's the dream that I am dreaming 

As I float 

In my boat? 

**Pork will soon be running high 

While I'm here. 
And I can't be there to buy 

While I'm here — 
And my manager, I wot. 
Is a scoundrel, like as not, 
And is stealing all I've got 

While I'm here. 

"Heaven knows how much I'll lose 

While I'm here, 
For I never get the news 

While I'm here — 

93 



Drifting 

Holy smoke ! how do I know 
Who's absconded with my dough 
And skipped off to Mexico 
While I'm here? 

"And my partner, Anderson, 

While I'm here, 
Can he be depended on 

While I'm here? 
Nothing ever happens right 
If I'm absent over night — 
Say ! I'll bet my hair turns white 

While I'm here." 

As I float 

In my boat 
All my troubles left behind ; 

Drifting wide 

On the tide, 
Free of heart and free of mind, 

Nature's idle waif am I 

'Twixt the water and the sky 
Just the place for idle dreaming 

As I float 

In my boat. 



94 



NATURAL HISTORY IN THE YEAR 3,000 

The Horse 

This hairy mammal (stuffed, of course) 

In ancient times was called the Horse, 

Before the auto was the rave. 

That edged him from the turf and pave. 

Although he's now a curio 

It's very comforting to know 

He didn't have the faults that mar 

That horseless horse, the auto-car. 

He wasn't painted red or green, 

He didn't smell of gasohne. 

He didn't terrorize the road. 

Collide with fences or explode. 

But otherwise, I grieve to state, 

The poor old Horse is out of date, 

Quite useless for our age, of course — 

Back to the showcase with the Horse ! 

The Egg 

This rare antique is called an Egg- 
Don't poke or handle it, I beg. 
That bird, now obsolete, the Hen, 
Once gave it to the tribes of men, 
95 



The Egg 

What is this thing, an Egg, you ask ? 
Child, to explain would be a task. 
The Egg was used and still alive 
As late as 1905. 

It happened somewhat thus, you see : 
Throughout the nineteenth century 
The Hen was under contract pay 
To furnish Eggs from day to day. 
In I goo, text-books state, 
There came a walking delegate, 
Who told the chickens on the pike 
Their plainest duty was to strike, 
In anno nineteen hundred one 
A hen fruit famine was begun; 
In anno nineteen hundred two 
The Eggs became so dear and few 
That they were sold hke jewels, in pairs, 
To spendthrift, reckless millionnaires, 
This Egg, the last one to appear, 
Was bought for the museum here. 
Though it would be a reckless treat, 
I would not buy this Egg to eat ; 
For though I dote on ancient wine, 
I crave no antique eggs for mine. 



96 



BROADWAY IN SUMMER 

With never a fare to pillage, 
The vacant hansom rolls 

Through a Deserted Village 
Of many thousand souls. 

Where every style that matters 
And all the tucks and frills 

Of milliners and hatters 
Have vanished to the hills. 

Save here and there a bounder 
Whose garments moistly chng, 

And here and there a rounder 
Left over from the spring 

An actor on vacation 

Thinks with a hungry smack 
Of the Grand Situation 

He'll get when Frohman's back. 

Yon 'bus-like auto fleeing, 
In hues of gaudy paint, 

Is full of tourists seeing 
Gay Gotham as it Ain't. 

They wear a look of wonder, 

As much as if to say, 
"Why, in the name of thunder, 

Are we here, anyway?" 
99 

LOFC. 



Broadway in Summer 

The soda fountain bubbles 

In cadence of relief, 
"Come in and drown your troubles, 

Ye Citizens of Grief!" 

The Dago son of tillage 
Is mending asphalt holes 

In this Deserted Village 
Of many thousand sou' 



SONGS OF THE UNSUCCESSFUL 
The Voice of the Spectre 



I AM the Ghost of Failure, wliom all men shun and flee; 

I drive the foolish multitude to strive with panting breath ; 
The doctor without patients, the lawyer without fee, 
The merchant without customers grow pallid when they see 

The grayness of my presence, — I am haunting them to 
death. 

II 

And some I mark in babyhood who never shall be strong. 
And some I stripe in manhood till they droop and fall 
behind ; 
But some I meet in Arcady, a-journeying along 
So merry in the sunlight and the roses and the song 

They cannot feel my Shadow. They are blessed as God 
is kind ! 

Ill 

I meet men in the battle when the fires of hazard glow ; 

I break their lusty lances and I turn their courage cold, 
And some I dog in silence from the springtime to the snow. 



The Man at the Desk 

In waking and in sleeping, — yet they never seem to know 
My hand upon their shoulders till they're old, — ah, 
very old ' 

IV 

I am the Ghost of Failure, who haunts the daylight gleams ; 
The hero meets me with a smile, the coward with a gri- 
mace; 
The artist sees me in his paints, the plotter in his schemes, 
The king confronts me from his throne or flees me in his 
dreams ; 
But the Wise Man smites me to the earth, — he looks me 
in the face. 



The Man at the Desk 



The Man at the Desk has a patient look 
As he writes and writes in his copybook, 
And he bends his back to the task before 
Like a galley slave to his hand-rubbed oar. 
Columns of figures he marshals by. 
Piled up decimals mountains high. 
Which seem to sing to his well-ruled brain 
His long, monotonous life-refrain : — 

"Debit, credit, voucher, pay, — 
Discount, balance, day by day. 
Carried forward, interest, duns," — 
So the monotonous river runs. 

I02 



The Man at the Desk 

II 

The Man at the Desk with the patient luck 
Has followed the rule of the copybook : 
"Early to bed and early to rise," 
Yet he's neither healthy, wealthy, nor wise. 
Honest, industrious, sober, chained 
To his office cell he has long remained, 
Dead of ambition, busy of pen, 
Adding up figures for other men. 

"Debit, credit, remit, amount, 
Carried forward, close account; 
Daybooks, draftbooks, interest, duns," - 
So the monotonous river runs. 

Ill 

The Man at the Desk with the patient look 
Has written his life in the open book. 
Has charged up Youth with a small amount, 
And crossed off Love as a closed account ; 
Yet bright are the tears in his faded eye 
As the column of figures marches by, 
Black of ink and with mourning brave, 
Like a last parade to a yawning grave. 

"Debit, credit," the bugles play, 
"Discount, balance, voucher, pay. 
Carried forward, interest, duns," — 
So the monotonous river runs. 



104 



The Wrong Girl 



The Wrong Girl 



Barlow might have carried 

Something by surprise — 
Barlow's gone and married 

A pair of velvet eyes. 
So they've packed and rented 

Somewhere out of town ; 
Barlow's quite contented, 

And they've "settled down." 

II 

Barlow's loafing habit 

Surely needs a spur; 
Pretty, downy rabbit, 

There's no zip to her, — 
Nothing of the battle 

Women put in men. 
She can pout and prattle 

Nicely — but what then? 

Ill 

Barlow's Great Idea 

Now must go to air. 
Surely she must be a 

Heavy weight to bear, 



The Wrong Girl 

To his collar dangling 
With her fluff and floss, 

Like a courage-strangling 
Little albatross ! 



IV 

Other men may marry 

Women right or wrong, 
Other men may carry 

Burdens and be strong, - 
Feebleness appealing 

To the Greater Man, — 
But I have a feeling 

Barlow never can. 

V 

Barlow needs a leaven 

For his mind, no doubt, 
What in earth or heaven 

Can she talk about? 
Can her chatter smuggish 

Carry zest again 
To his lazy, sluggish 

Genius of a brain ? 

VI 

Well, let Barlow tarry 
With his fate, if need; 
io6 



State's Evidence 

Other fellows marry, 

(Other men succeed.) 
They'll grow great and wealthy, 

He'll grow small and poor, 
Shabby, easy, healthy, 

Happy, — and obscure. 



State's Evidence 



Ther's stripes around me summer suit, — me number's 83 ; 
It's seven years fer Spider Jones and seven years fer me ; 
But William Whipple, where is he ? Oh, married to 'is gal 
And livin' quite respectable, — he split upon a pal. 

II 

The nights are long, the days are long, — we take 'em like 

the bunch, — 
It's chain-gang to the quarry yard and lockstep back to 

lunch ; 
But William's got religion, so they tells me, wit' 'is gal. 
And hollerin' Salvation, — since he split upon a pal. 

Ill 

This prison ain't Delmonico's. The tableware is rough. 

The beef is like the boarders, jest a little trifle tough, — 

And William Whipple probably despises our corral 

Since he's livin' free and prosperous, — by splittin' on a pal. 

107 



State's Evidence 



IV 



I can't forgit that window-job we engineered, us three, 
How WiUiam watched the street fer Jones, who passed the 

goods to me; 
I can't forgit the fly-cops' game (I think I never shall), 
When William got the third degree — and split upon a pal. 

V 

It's treadmill, treadmill, while we live, and quicklime when 

we die; 
Yet them in jail has whiter hearts than some what sees the 

sky, — 
Ther's self-respect in prison clothes, and what us convicts 

call 
The honor of the chain-gang, says, "Don't split upon a pal ! " 

VI 

Oh, seven years is seven hells, and I'm a-gittin' gray. 
And Spider Jones is coughin' in a peevish sort o' way; 
But we're a-livin' fer Release, — then \\'iniam and 'is gal 
Won't git no easy-jury law fer splittin' on a pal ! 



SONGS WITHOUT SENSE 



i 



A SONG OF THE ORIENT 

In Alkalim by Aburat 
A hoary, holy dervish sat 

Upon a rug of quaint design, 
Marked "$7.49-" 
His air was meek, his hair was white, 
His whiskers Hke a Dowieite, 

And as he bobbed his bulging head 
I marvelled much at what he said: 
^''Kismet il allah, 

Alkalim. 
Zoo-zoo, bishmallah, 
Hookah — zim/" 

Good Moslems came from Aburat 
To where the holy dervish sat, 

And listened with a look intense 
Of deep, admiring reverence. 
And ere they passed they gravely stopped 
And coins into his turban popped — 
In fact he drove a thriving trade 
From those obscure remarks he made: 
'^Kismet, il allah, 

Alkalim. 
Zoo-zoo, bishmallah, 
Hookah — zim / ' 
III 



A Song of the Orient 

"Great Scott !" I cried, "it seems that these 
Are very easy folks to please, 

Here is a royal road to wealth 
Without endangering one's health." 
So, spending seven-forty-nine, 
/ got a rug of quaint design 

On which / squatted in the street. 
These words beginning to repeat: 
''Kismei, il allah, 

Alkalim. 
Zoo-zoo, hishmallah, 
Hookah — zim/" 

And soon the folk of Aburat 
Came rioting to where I sat. 

One thwacked me briskly in the eye, 
While others smote me hip and thigh; 
Then swart police in Turkish mail 
Despatched me to the county jail, 
Retaining as a proper fine 
My bargain rug of quaint design — 
"Kismel, il allah, 

Alkalim. 
Zoo-zoo, hishmallah, 
Hookah — zim!" 

Next morning, as I quit the town, 
I saw the dervish, meek and brown, 

Selling his words like griddle cakes. 

"Alas!" I cried, "we both are fakes. 

112 



A Song of the Orient 

We both have played the self-same tricks, 
Yet he gets coins, while I get kicks — 
Which shows how people always pay 
To hear the actor — not the play." 
"Kismet, il allah, 

Alkalim. 
Zoo-zoo, bishmallah, 
Hookah — zim ! " 



"3 



A LIE OF ANCIENT ROME 

A Senator of ancient Rome 

Quite late one night was going home, 
With his hie, haec, hoc, 
As he stumped along the block, 

And the moon was on the grand old Colosseum. 

Profoundly wished that conscript peer 

To hail a hansom charioteer. 
With his hie, haee, hoc. 
As he trudged around the block, 

But he didn't have the Roman coin to fee 'em. 

At last he said, "Great Ca?sar's spook! 
Unless I'm dreadfully mistook. 

With my hie, haec, hoc. 

It is nearly three o'clock 
And seven moons are shining on the Tiber; 
I've looked too much, methinks, since lunch 
On Scipio's Falernian punch. 

With my hie, haec, hoc, 

And this walk around the block 
Is hard upon a jolly old imbiber." 

At last he walked so far, they say. 

He passed the noble Appian Way, 

With his hie, haec, hoc, 

. And it gave him such a shock 
114 



A Lie of Ancient Rome 

That he ahnost dropped his Latin conjugation 
When a Pretorian on his round 
That rashly roaming Roman found, 

And he said, ^^Hac, himc ! 

If ye haven't got a bunk. 
Come hither and I'll lock ye in the station." 

So late next day to ancient Rome 
That Senator went meekly home, 

With his hie, haec, hoc — 

It was nearly four o'clock 
And his caput seemed too large for Polyphemus. 
When friends asked, "Whither didst thou hie? " 
He tersely answered, ^' Alibi, 

With my hie, haec, hoc, — 

I have travelled every block 
Of this bloomin' town of Romulus and Remus ! " 



"5 



THE CARES OF A CARETAKER 

I 

A NICE old lady by the sea 
Was neat as she was plain, 

And every time the tide came in 
She swept it back again. 

II 

And when the sea untidy grew 

And waves began to beat, 
She took her little garden rake 

And raked it smooth and neat. 

Ill 

She ran a carpet-sweeper up 
And down the pebbly sand. 

She said, "This is the only way 
To keep it clean — good land ! " 

IV 

And when the gulls came strolhng by, 

She drove them shrilly back. 

Remarking that it spoiled the beach, 

"The way them birds do track." 
ii6 



The Cares of a Caretaker 

V 

She fed the catfish clotted cream 
And taught it how to purr — 

And were a catfish so endowed 
She would have stroked its fur. 

VI 

She stopped the Httle sea-urchins 
That travelled by in pairs, 

And washed their dirty faces clean 
And combed their little hairs. 

VII 

She spread white napkins on the surf 
With which she fumed and fussed. 

"When it ain't covered up," she said, 
"It gits all over dust." 

VIII 

She didn't like to see the ships 
With all the waves act free, 

And so she got a painted sign 
Which read: '' Keep off the Sea.'' 

IX 

But dust and splutter as she might, 

Her work was sadly vain; 

However oft she swept the beach, 

The tides came in again. 
117 



The Cares of a Caretaker 

X 

And she was sometimes wan and worn 
When she retired to bed — 

"* A. woman's work ain't never done," 
That nice old lady said. 



THE SONG OF THE DANCING DERVISHES 

This is the song that the Dervishes sing 
As they whirl, as they skirl, in a magic ring, 
As cheek by jowl 
They holler and howl 

And prance and dance and whoop and wail 
Till their lips are pale, 
In the land of the mad Mad Mullah, 
As they caper and kick 
Like Haroun el Nick 
In the moon of the Blue Abdullah: 
''Allah il Allah! 

Do-see- do / 
Yip ! Bismallah 
And up we go! 
Bang! Bang! 

There was a man in Khoordistan, 
A very holy Mussulman 

From the mosque of the Great Malecca, 
Who had nine wives in his fair hareem — 
But he left 'em all in a prophet's dream 

And walked on his hands to Mecca. 

Kismet bang! but he perspired. 

And when his hands grew very tired : 

"I'll rest a while," he said; 
119 



The Song of the Dancing Dervishes 

So upside-down he stood, and thrust 
His holy turban in the dust 
And slept upon his head. 
Boo! boo! 
Yip, huroo! 

Pie was a good Mohammedan, 
A very famous Mussulman 

In the faith of the mad Mad Mullah !" 
Sing the Dervishes as they whirl and whiz, 
As they jip and jog 
Through a maniac clog 

In the moon of the Blue Abdullah. 

This is the song that the Dervishes shout. 
Turning cartwheels in and out. 
While the Slaves of the Sheik 
Bellow and shriek, 

While pilgrims come to the tum-tum-tum 
Of the kettledrum, 
As long as the daylight lingers, 
As they throw fierce spasms 
Across the chasms 
And whistle upon their fingers: 
"Allah il Allah! 

Do-see-do ! 
Yip ! Bismallah 
And up we go! 
Bang ! Bang ! 

In Badahir an old Emir 
Balanced a broomstick on his ear 

121 



The Song of the Dancing Dervishes 

For three successive winters. 
Upon that ear his faith he pinned 
Till up there came a desert wind 

And broke the broom to splinters. 
Kismet bang! but he was sad — 
Being the only broom he had 

Its loss he did deplore — 
And so to gain his soul's repose 
He balanced toothpicks on his nose 

For seven summers more. 

Hoo! hoo! 

Kalamazoo ! 

A faithful Moslemite was he, 

An ardent, earnest devotee 

To the faith of the mad Mad Mullah !" 
Sing the Dervishes as they whirl and whiz, 
As they skip and hop 
And flip and flop 

In the moon of the Blue Abdullah. 



122 



A BASS SOLO 

The Basso Pr-r-rofundo, in evening dress, 
He tackles the ro-ho-ho-ho-ling sea, 
Boom, boom ! 
And in subway staccato attempts to express 
The mar-r-riner's ag-o-nee. 
Boom, boom ! 
'Tis the song of the anvil, asleep in the deep, 

In a dar-r-rk br-r-rown, minor-r-r key, 
And he swings as he sings, and he sings as he swings. 
To the depths. 
To the depths of the 

X 
Y 
Z. 

See ! a ship in dis-tr-r-ress, with tattered shroud ! 

Is none who will su-hu-hu-hu-cor bring? 
Boom, boom ! 
But the stor-r-rm r-r-rocks long, and the surf beats loud — 

While the Basso continues to sing, 
Boom, boom ! 
Lo ! the vessel r-r-reels and is sinking fast, 

But the vo-ca-hst, what cares he? 
For he frowns as they drown, and they drown as he frowns, 

In the depths, 

In the depths of the ' 

Y 

Z. 

123 



A Bass Solo 

There's many a br-r-rave, br-r-rave, gallant soul, 
Who sank with a gur-hur-hur-hur-gling throat, 
Boom, boom ! 
In the cr-r-ruel, cr-r-ruel sur-r-rge and deadly roll 
Of the Basso's lower note. 
Boom, boom ! 
He's the Stor-r-rm King's pal, and he laughs ha ! ha ! 

His mur-r-rderous wor-r-rk to see — 
Let them howl as he growls, let him growl as they how 
In the depths. 
In the depths of the 

X 
Y 
Z. 

Oh, the Basso Profundo is r-r-reckless of life 
When he sings on the co-ho-ho-honcert stage. 
Boom, boom ! 
Yet he's kind to his childr-ren and meek to his wife 
When he asks for his weekly wage. 
Boom, boom ! 
And it's str-r-ange that this happy, domestic man 

Such a ter-r-rible fiend can be. 
When he growls as they howl, and they howl as he growls. 
To the depths, 
To the depths of the 

X 
Y 
Z. 



124 



THE SEA SERPANT 

AN ACCURATE DESCRIPTION 

A-sleepin' at length on the sand, 

Where the beach was all tidy and clean, 

A-strokin' his scale with the brush on his tail 
The wily Sea Serpant I seen. 

And what was his color? you asks. 

And how did he look ? inquires you, 

I'll be busted and blessed if he didn't look jest 
Like you would of expected 'im to ! 

His head was the size of a — well, 

The size what they always attains; 

He whistled a tune what was built like a prune, 
And his tail was the shape o' his brains. 

His scales they was ruther — you know — 

Like the leaves what you pick off o' eggs; 

And the way o' his walk — well, it's useless to talk, 
Fer o' course you've seen Sea Serpants' legs. 

His length it was seventeen miles. 

Or fathoms, or inches, or feet 
(Me memory's sich that I can't recall which. 

Though at figgers I've seldom been beat). 



The Sea Serpant 

And I says as I looks at the beast, 

"He reminds me o' somethin' I've seen — 

Is it candy or cats or humans or hats, 
Or Fenimore Cooper I mean?" 

And as I debated the point, 

In a way that I can't understand. 

The Sea Serpant he disappeared in the sea 
And walked through the ocean by land. 

And somehow I knowed he'd come back. 
So I marked off the place with me cap; 

'Twas Latitude West and Longitude North 
And forty-eight cents by the map. 

And his length it was seventeen miles, 

Or inches, or fathoms, or feet 
(Me memory's sich that I can't recall which, 

Though at figgers I've seldom been beat). 



126 



THE EDUCATION OF GRANDPA 



Grandpa, in a nursemaid's role, 
Took small Henry for a stroll. 
Henry, when the time was pat, 
Poked a stick through Grandpa's hat. 
Grandpa, at this childish joke, 
Ratiier petulantly spoke. 
"This," said Henry wnth contrition, 
"Sweetens Grandpa's disposition." 

n 

Henry stretched a wire slack 
Right across his Grandpa's track. 
Calling sweetly, "Grandpa dear, 
I've a great surprise — come here !" 
Grandpa, willing to admire. 
Came and tripped across the wire. 
Henry cried, "This visitation 
Trains your powers of observation." 

Ill 

Henry, with a care discreet. 

Placed a tack upon a seat. 

Grandpa, with rheumatic joint. 

Sat himself upon the point. 
127 



The Education of Grandpa 

Joyful light filled Henry's eye 
When his grandsire leaped on high. 
"This will teach you readiness — 
Quick response in time of stress!" 

IV 

Ere this quiet stroll was done 
Henry tried another one — 
Hit his Grandpa with a can, 
Whereupon that gentleman, 
Every aged nerve a-tingle, 
Walloped Henry with a shingle. 
"Joy!" said Henry, 'twixt his cries, 
"This gives Grandpa exercise!" 

V 

When the skies were all a-gloam 
Graybeard man and child strolled home; 
Grandpa's limbs were somewhat battered 
And his modest clothes were tattered 
And he leaned upon his cane. 
Like a being wracked with pain. 
But the grandchild's tone was gay, 
"Grandpa's learned a lot to-day." 



128 



THE GRAY SPOOKY-SPOOK 

The gray Spooky-spook is a creature so weird 

That he frightens himself half to death, 
As he shrieks through the midnight and tugs at his beard 

While good folk lie holding their breath ; 
And he faints dead away till the first dawn of day, 

While his blood runs as cold as a clam, 
As he sits in his gloom on the roof of a tomb 

And thinks: "How uncanny I am!" 

Whee ! Gadzook ! 

For the gray Spooky-spook — 

What a cheerful companion he is ! 
As he tells, turning green, 
Of the murders he's seen. 

Till his knees and his knuckles are friz. 

When the gray Spooky-spook has a mind to be gay 
He does what you'd think he would do — 
He sits in a graveyard and groans in a way 

That makes all the owls inquire: "Who?" 
He tells how his Granduncle Anderson died 

Of poison and hunger and fright ; 
Then he weeps on your shoulder, remarking with pride: 

"Come, let us be merry to-night!" 

Shoo ! Gadzook ! 

For the gray Spooky-spook — 

A jovial character he, 

K 129 



The Gray Spooky-Spook 

As he tells how it feels 
To be hanged by the heels 

Or shot with one's back to a tree. 

When the gray Spooky-spook goes to visit the sick 

He then looks especially sad, 
As he murmurs: "Tut-tut! change your medicine quick, 

For you're looking most frightfully bad I" 
Then he reads you a dirge on cremation and chill 

And the death-rate from sunstroke and sorrow. 
And he sighs as he goes: "You seem hopelessly ill. 

But I'm sure you'll feel better to-morrow." 

Hist ! Gadzook ! 

For the gray Spooky-spook, 

Who's as cheerful and gay as a pall ; 
And it gives me a thrill 
Of delight, when I'm ill, 

To know that the Spooky will call. 



130 



THE HAUNTED ELEVATOR 

Our new elevator boy got rather impudent one day, 

And he said the work was much too hard, considering the 

pay; 
That he didn't like the wages, and he "couldn't stand de 

graft." 
So he quit the job, and left his car a-hanging in the shaft. 

I was on the sixteenth story when the incident occurred, 
But I didn't know the boy had quit — in fact, I hadn't 

heard — 
So I went into the hallway, and I gave the bell a punch 
To call up the elevator, which would take me down to lunch. 

So the bell went tinkle down the shaft, the oily cable slid, 

And the elevator started, as it usually did ; 

But when it had reached my floor and stopped, I couldn't 

understand — 
For the car was running by itself — as empty as your hand ! 

Long I gazed into the vacant car, enwrapped in study 

brown. 
When a Voice from out the void inquired, distinctly, "Going 

down ? " 
So I boldly stepped into the cage, which started to descend, 
While I wondered, rather va-^uely, where this eery trip would 

end. 

131 



The Haunted Elevator 

When we passed the second landing I began to breathe once 

more, 
For the car it stopped abruptly, and the Voice exclaimed, 

" Ground floor ! " 
But I left the elevator with some nervous, backward looks, 
For I have small faith in spirits, though I hate the thought 

of spooks. 

When I told the building manager, his anxious face grew glad. 
"Sure! the elevator's haunted, but the fact is not so bad; 
For the Ghost will do the job and never ask for any pay. 
While I have to give a mortal kid a dollar ten a day." 

Thus the situation faced us, and of this we made the most, 
Though it's rather skittish business being lifted by a ghost. 
Yet the spook was always courteous and prompt to mind the 

bell. 
And the tenants all agreed he did his business very well. 

All this time the building manager he laughed in fiendish glee. 
"It is very economical, this hiring spooks," said he. 
But the cooler-headed tenants had premonitory fears — 
Ah, distrust a ghost whose salary is two months in arrears ! 

Yes, our direst fears were realized. Upon the first of May, 

When the mortal clerks and laborers were getting of their 

pay. 

Then the Unseen Operator seemed to feel the bitter slight, 

And he went upon a weird and ghostly strike, as well he 

might. 

132 



The Haunted Elevator 

When the passengers were going up eleven floors or so, 
Disregarding all the signals, he continued still to go ; 
Eighteen, twenty floors he mounted, halding silently aloof. 
Till the passengers observed that we were going through the 
roof. 

Through the roof and ever upward rushed the elevator high, 
On an unseen shaft still rising to the regions of the sky, 
Till we reached some floor invisible, a mile above the town, 
Then the spectre gave a chuckle as he chortled, "Going 
down!" 

And so down, down, down we started, at a rate to freeze your 

blood. 
Till we reached the building proper with a most uncanny 

thud. 
Then we hit the first floor landing, where the spectre gave a 

shout, 
"This car going down to Hades — here's your chance to 

tumble out!" 

So the panic-stricken passengers from out the car all cleared, 
As it sank right through the basement and completely dis- 
appeared ; 
Elevator, cage, and cable vanished from the sight of men, 
And I'm positively certain it was never seen again. 



133 




An old sea-dog on a sailor's log 

Thus spake to a passer-by: 
"The most onnatteral thing on earth 

Is the power o' the human eye — 
Oh, bless me! yes, oh, blow me! yes — 

It's the power o' the human eye ! 

"We'd left New York en route for Cork 

A day and a half to sea, 
When Jeremy Tait, our fourteenth mate. 

He fastened his eyes on me. 
134 



The Powerful Eyes o' Jeremy Tait 

"And wizzle me hook ! 't was a powerful look 
That flashed from them eyes o' his; 

I was terrified from heart to hide 
And chilled to me bones and friz. 




* O Jeremy Tait, O fourteenth mate,' 
I hollers with looks askance, 
135 



The Powerful Eyes o' Jeremy Tait 

'Full well I wist ye're a hypnotist, 
So please to remove yer glance ! ' 

"But Jeremy laughed as he turned abaft 

His glance like a demon rat, 
And he frightened the cook with his piercin' look, 

And he startled the captain's cat. 

"Oh me, oh my! when he turned his eye 

On our very efficient crew. 
They fell like dead or they stood like lead 

And stiff as a poker grew. 

"So early and late did Jeremy Tait 

That talent o' his employ, 
Which caused the crew, and the captain, too. 

Some moments of great annoy. 

"For we loved J. Tait, our fourteenth mate. 

As an officer brave and true, 
But we quite despised bein' hypnotized 

When we had so much work to do. 

"So we grabbed J. Tait, our fourteenth mate 

(His eyes bein' turned away). 
By collar and sleeve, and we gave a heave, 

And chucked him into the spray. 

"His eyes they flashed as in he splashed, 

But this glance it was sent too late, 

For close to our bark a man-eatin' shark 

Jumped after Jeremy Tait. 
136 



The Powerful Eyes o' Jeremy Tait 



"And you can bet he would ha' been et 
If he hadn't have did as he done — 




Straight at the shark an optical spark 
From his terrible eve he spun. 



The Powerful Eyes o' Jeremy Tait 

"Then the shark he shook at Jeremy's look 
And he quailed at Jeremy's glanee; 

Then he gave a sort of a sharkery snort 
And fell right into a trance ! 

"Quite mesmerized and hypnotized 

That submarine monster lay; 
Meek as a shrimp, with his fins all limp, 

He silently floated away. 

"So we all of us cried with a conscious pride, 

' Hurrah for Jeremy Tait ! ' 
And we hove a line down into the brine 

And reskied him from his fate. 

"And the captain cries, 'We kin use them eyes 

To mighty good purpose soon. 
Men, spread the sails — we're a-goin' for whales, 

And we don't need nary harpoon. 

"'For when we hail a blubberous whale 

A-spoutin' the waters high, 
We'll sail up bold and knock 'im cold 

With the power o' Jeremy's eye!' " 

And thus on his log the old sea-dog 

Sat whittUng nautical chips: 
"Oh, powerf'ler far than the human eye 

Is the truth o' the human lips; 
But rarest of all is the pearls that fall 

From a truthful mariner's lips." 



139 



A LEAP-YEAR PLUNGE 

Oh a dreary life it are 
To be a fascinatin' tar 

And live on land in leap-year when the willin' maids is 
wooin', 
And it drives me half insane 
When I thinks o' Mary Jane 

And the way that I rejected of 'er billin' and 'er cooin'. 

'Twas larb'rd hard a-lee 
That she made 'er eyes at me 

(And oh, them eyes was squinty and 'er hair was carrot red, 
And 'er chin was rather double. 
But 'er nose was built fer trouble, 

Which same I often noticed and which same I often said). 

And when she looked at me, 
I was timid as could be, 

Fer plainly she revealed 'er matrimonial intent, 
And when I heard 'er feet 
Still pursuin' down the street 

I yelled, "Policeman, please protect a lone, unmarried 
gent!" 

"Oh won't ye marry me?" 

One day she says, says she. 

140 



A Leap- Year Plunge 

"Oh that I reelly couldn't do," I answers 'er protesthi', 
"Because, ye see, yer face. 
Though perfect in its place, 

Ain't what the world calls 'beautiful,' but rather ' inter- 
estin'.'" 

"But say not so," says she, 
"Fer Fm goin' to marry ye." 

I took the boat fer Denmark. She was waitin' when I 
got there. 
Then I struck through Russia inland. 
Went to Poland, then to Finland, 

But almost every station Mary Jane serenely sot there. 

Next I jumped an Ocean liner 
And took a trip to Chinar, 

But useless was me journey — Mary Jane was on the dock. 
And when I skipped to Spain, 
Lo ! there sot me Mary Jane 

Still smilin' 'er seraphic smile — enough to stop a clock. 

But when I struck Gibraltar 
Then she led me to the altar. 

Me funds was quite exhausted, but me bride was fresh 
and joshin'. 
.So we're livin', her and me. 
In a cottage by the sea, 

Quite comf 'table and happy — Mary Jane she takes in 
washin'. 



141 



NILE-ISM 

'TwAS morning on the river Nile 

Along the lotos meres 
And the frugal mother crocodile 

Was shedding timely tears; 
An Ibis bird her moanings hears 

And shyly bit his nails, 
But the merry baby crocodiles 

Sat playing with their tails. 

"Our summer homes are catacombs," 

Repined the crocodile, 
"Old Egypt's pride is mummified, 

And sadly flows the Nile. 
And tell me, please, can Rameses 

E'er reign again ?" she said. 
But the Ibis kind cried, "Never mind — 

He's been a long time dead." 

"'Midst statues stiff and hieroglyph 
Where buzzed the sacred scarab, 

Where Cleopat in state once sat 
Now squats the greasy Arab. 

The jackal rooms in Cheops's tombs — 
I hope you catch my point ? " 

"Oh yes indeed i "' the bird agreed, 

"The times are out of joint." 
142 



Nile-ism 

"The sacred reed has gone to seed — 

O last, O bitter cup ! " 
(In this brief pause she oped her jaws 

And chewed the Ibis up.) 
"O bitter end, most cherished friend!" 

She cried with broken wails, 
But the merry little crocodiles 

Sat playing with their tails. 



143 



SCIENCE FOR THE YOUNG 

Thoughtful little Willie Frazer 
Carved his name with father's razor; 
Father, unaware of trouble, 
Used the blade to shave his stubble. 
Father cut himself severely. 
Which pleased little WiUie dearly — 
"I have fixed my father's razor 
So it cuts!" said Willie Frazer. 

Mamie often wondered why 
Acids trouble alkaU — 
Mamie, in a manner placid, 
Fed the cat boracic acid. 
Whereupon the cat grew frantic, 
Executing many an antic, 
"Ah!" cried Mamie, overjoyed, 
"Pussy is an alkaloid!" 

Arthur with a lighted taper 

Touched the fire to grandpa's paper. 

Grandpa leaped a foot or higher. 

Dropped the sheet and shouted "Fire!" 

Arthur, wrapped in contemplation. 

Viewed the scene of conflagration. 

"This," he said, "confirms my notion — 

Heat creates both light and motion." 
144 



Science for the Young 

Wee, experimental Nina 
Dropped her mother's Dresden china 
From a seventh-story casement, 
Smashing, crashing to the basement. 
Nina, somewhat apprehensive, 
Said: "This china is expensive, 
Yet it proves by demonstration 
Newton's law of gravitation." 



145 



AN ARABIAN NIGHTMARE 

O THE Caliph-rum-Boodle, of Swilliking Swoo, 

Lived a quiet and peaceable life, 
For he vowed that each morning these things he would do : 
He'd read from the Koran a chapter or two, 

Then murder his favorite wife. 

So, being a tidy, methodical soul, 

He made early rising his pride. 
When, sipping his coffee and nibbling a roll 
And reading a text from his favorite scroll. 

He'd summon his favorite bride. 

"Come hither, come hither, my favorite wife, 

And fear not the words that I say. 
But kindly dehver my favorite knife" — 
But the favorite wife answered, "Not on your life'" 

(For that was her favorite way.) 

"But why dost thou cavil, my soul's own delight, 
When my first morning's task I would do?" 

"I claim," she would answer, "my favorite right; 

To spin, in the mode of Arabian Night, 
Your favorite story to you." 

"Make haste!" he would answer, "Remember it's Mon- 
day." 
Whereat the fair lady began, 

"There once was a Princess of Salamagundi 

146 



An Arabian Nightmare 

Named Kali Alisha ben Zoozu el Suiidi, 
Her father the King of Gazan. 

"The Princess had suitors and lovers a score, 

But none she could easily pick — '' 
(Here the lady her story related no more 
For the Caliph of Swoo was beginning to snore — 

For that was his favorite trick.) 

And when from his slumbers at length he arose, 

Untroubled his peaceable brow. 
As he asked the chief eunuch to powder his nose, 
And it was delightfully safe to suppose 

That he had forgotten his vow. 

For, being the kindest and gentlest of men. 

Through long years of plenty ruled he, 
And the people of Swoo mourned unceasingly when 
He died at the age of one hundred and ten, 
And his wife at one hundred and three. 



147 



ADOLPHUS AND THE LION 

Adolphus was a thoughtful child 
Who acted as he should, 

Self-sacrificing, meek, and mild, 
And full of impulse good. 




One day when he was 'eating pie 

Beneath the forest tree 
148 



Adolphus and the Lion 

A timid Lion passing by 
The gentle child did see. 

"Adolphus, I am hungeree 

And rather faint am I. 
Pray be so good as give to me 

A morsel of your pie." 

"I'm very glad you told me so," 
Adolphus said, well pleased. 

"'Twill be reward enough to know 
Your appetite's appeased." 

The Lion ate Adolphus' pie 

With all politeness due, 
Then pausing with a grateful sigh 

He ate Adolphus too. 

Then rising with a thankful roar 
He sauntered down the plain — 

A stronger, better Lion for 
Adolphus' deed humane. 

Herein their lies a moral sweet 
Which all who read may find : 

Be generous to those you meet — 
To animals be kind. 



149 



THE SONG OF THE SPOOKY SHIP 

A HAUNTED ship was the Admiral Pipp 

Of the most rip-roarin'-est sort, 
And me tale is true as the day is long, 

And true as the night is short. 

Capting Dave was her skipper brave, 

A ruffy old, bluffy old tar 
Who swigged his gin from a biscuit tin, 

For a curious cove he war. 

But after dark on that haunted bark 
Ye could hear 'em gibber and squeak. 

Ye could hear 'em moan, ye could hear 'em groan, 
From the keel to the topmost peak. 

And one was the ha'ant of a bos'n gaunt. 

And one of a sailor stout 
And they'd dance all night by the for'ard light 

And stand on ther heads and shout. 

So one fine night the bos'n white 

His gobulun whistle blew 
And, blow me blow ! from the watch below 

He summoned a ghostly crew ! 

And they started to dance and they started to prance 
All over that ha'anted gig 



The Song of the Spooky Ship 

With a horrid sound of "AH hands round!" 
To a sort of a cake-walk jig. 

Now Capting Dave, (he sure was brave !) 

He watched 'em fooHn' awhile, 
Then he says to me, "I've a great idee 

To handle them spooks in style." 

So to them he said, "Because ye're dead 

Ye haven't no claim to shirk ; 
If ye're goin' to lark on this ha'anted bark, 

Ye've got to git in and work." 

So he put a spook to helpin' the cook 
And he put a spook at the wheel 

And other shades at various trades 
He set with a will of steel. 

And ghostly tars at the masts and spars 

He set to reefin' the sail. 
While one poor spec' was a-swabbin' the deck 

With a sort of a spectral wail. 

So three days long that wraithy throng 
Worked on — 'twas a right good joke 

And us o' the crew with nothin' to do 
But lay in our bunks and smoke. 

But the third dark night them mariners white 
They spoke to the capting thus : — 

"We're a-goin' to skip this turribul ship 
Fer the hours is too long fer us." 
151 



The Song of the Spooky Ship 

So presto, whist ! straight into the mist 

Faded that graveyard corps; 
Jest vanished away, and up to this day 

They've never been heard of more. 

"Fer it's surely best that a ghost should rest," 

As I says to the capting's clerk, 
"Sperrits and spooks is great in books, 

But a httle mite shy o' work." 



152 



GOOD GUNNERY 

A-SMOKING a pipe of tobacky 

On a water-logged wreck of a spar, 
I met an itinerant Jacky, 

A wondering, pondering tar 
Who said: "Ye'd be blowed, if ye guessed, if ye knowed, 

What a wonderful person I are. 

"When I went to work for the navy, 

Ther' wasn't none better nor me. 
I sent forty vessels to Davy, 

And scart all the fleets from the sea. 
The trick bein' done with a forty-pound gun 

On the battleship Lily McGee. 

"The capting was proud o' me prowess, 

And I wa'n't ashamed o' me skill, 
Fer some tricks I done I allow is 

The talk o' the water-front still — 
Such as shootin' the eye from a bluebottle fly 

Miles away on a kingfisher's bill. 

"And oncet when a battle was ragin', 

(We fought about three times a day), 
The capting in accents engagin' 

Said, 'Willum,' — that's me, — 'step this way! 
Be so good as to snipe out the admiral's pipe 

On the bridge of his flagship Bombay.^ 
153 



Good Gunnery 

"So I answered, 'Aye, aye!' fresh and breezy, 
Then aimed forty pound o' cold lead. 

Which whizzed by the admiral easy, 
And sniped out 'is pipe as it sped; 

But I'm loath to repeat that the shot was too neat, 

For it blowed off the admiral's head. 

"Then the capting took paper and wrote it, 
'Soorender — acknarlidge defeat.' 

This I put in me gun, and I shot it 
Straight into the enemy's fleet — 

I landed that note in the commodore's boat, 
Where it lay at the commodore's feet. 

"So the enemy, pale with emotion, 

Immejut the'r colors they lowered, 

'For,' they says, 'we've the greatest devotion 
To war; but we couldn't afford 

To fall in the grip of a murderous ship 
With Willum the Gunner aboard.' 

"Then the capting he wished to promote me, 

But, 'No,' I replies, with a sob; 
'Ambition would only denote me 

A selfish, ongenerous snob.' 
And this, as you see, is the reason I be 

A-loafin' here out of a job." 



154 



TRADE WINDS 

I STOOD one day by the breezy bay 
A-watchin' the ships go by, 
When a tired tar said with a shake of his head : 
"I wisht I could tell a lie ! 

"I've saw some sights as would jigger yer lights, 
And they've jiggered me own in sooth, 
But I ain't wuth a darn at a-spinnin' a yarn 
What wanders away from the truth. 

"We was out on the gig, the Riggajig, 
Jest a mile and a half to sea, 
When Capting Snook, with a troubled look, 
He came and he says to me : — 

" 'O Bos'n Smith, make haste forthwith 
And hemstitch the for'ard sail; 
Accordeon pleat the dory sheet, 
For there's going to be a gale.' 

"I straightway did as the capting bid — 

No sooner the job was through 

Than the North wind whooj ! bounced over the roof 

And murderin' lights she blew ! 

"She blew the tars right off o' the spars. 
And the spars right off o' the mast, 
155 



Trade Winds 

And sails and pails and anchors and nails 
Flew by on the wings o' the blast. 

"Then the galley shook as she blew our cook 
Straight out o' the porthole glim, 
While pots and pans and kettles and cans 
Went clatterin' after him. 

"She blew the fire from our gallant stove 
And the coal from our gallant bin, 
Then she whistled apace past the capting's face 
And blew the beard off his chin ! 

" 'O wizzle me dead !' the capting said 
(And the words blew out of his mouth), 
'We're lost, I fear, if the wind don't veer 
And blow awhile from the South.' 

"And, wizzle me dead ! no sooner he'd said 

Them word's that blew from his mouth 

Than the wind switched round with a hurricane sound 

And blew straight in from the South. 

"And we opened our eyes with a wild surprise, 
And never a word to say — 
For in changin' her tack the wind blew back 
The things that she'd blew away ! 

"She blew the tars back onto the spars, 
And the spars back onto the mast; 
Back flew the pails and the sails and the nails 
Which into the ship stuck fast. 
156 



Trade Winds 

"And 'fore we could look she blew the cook 
Straight into the galley coop ; 
Back dropped the pans and the kettles and cans 
Without even spillin' the soup. 

"She blew the fire back into the stove 
Where it burned in its proper place — 
And we all of us cheered as she blew the beard 
Back onto the capting's face ! 



"There's more o' me tale," 

Said the sailor hale, 

"As would jigger yer lights in sooth; 

But I ain't wuth a darn 

At a-spinnin' a yarn 
What wanders away from the truth." 



157 



GODS AND LITTLE FISHES 



WHO'S ZOO IN AMERICA 

William Also-ran-dolph Hearst 

Willie runs a supplement which always beats the news; 
Willie runs for President, with nothing much to lose — 




Willie's always running, whether by request or not. 
Whenever there's a vacancy, it's WilHe-on-the-Spot. 

Frisky Willie, risky Willie, feverish for speed, 

Prints a rapid journal, so that he who runs may read. 
M i6i 



William Also-ran-dolph Hearst 

Willie runs for Governor quite regular of late, 
Willie runs the Government (or tries at any rate). 
Willie looks on Politics with serious intent, 
As a sort of annex to his Comic Supplement. 

Willing Willie, wanton Willie, can he, will he quit ? 
Willie'' s always playing tag — atid yet he's never It ! 

WilUe ran for Mayor once, but when he realized 
That he was defeated, he was not at all surprised. 
In this land, which (Willie says) by grafters is accursed, 
Almost everybody has defeated Willie Hearst. 

Dreaming Willie, scheming Willie, hitting of the pipe; 
He's one type 0} journalist — his JonrnaVs mostly type. 

When he saw that Puddles were the topics of the hour 
Willie got a Muck-Rake of a hundred-donkey power, 
Started up a geyser, shrilly shrieking all the time: 
"Don't you touch my mud ! I've got a scoop on this here 
slime ! " 

Frantic Willie, antic Willie, always on the jump, 

Willie found the Muck-Rake slow, and so he bought a pump. 

Brimstone is to WiUie quite the mildest of emulsions — 
Dowie multiplied by fits and Lawson in convulsions; 
Any great calamity that comes the world to curse, 
Read it in the "Journal " — and you'll find that it is worse. 

Bumptious Willie, gumptious Willie, running for a prize. 
Keeps his circulation brisk by constant exercise. 



162 



Thomas Fortune Ryan 

TnoiiAS Fortune Ryan 

This splendid t}-pe of citizen, 
More noble-browed than Dion, 

This beau-ideal of business men 
Is Thomas Fortune Rvan. — 




Philanthropist, half sociahstic. 
Democrat, money-lender, mystic. 

Whene'er he longs to take a street 
He needs no manifesto, 
163 



Thomas Fortune Ryan 

But simply forms a merger neat 

And all is over — presto ! — 
Quick confiscation, as he plans it, 
Is briefly known as "rapid transit." 

Although Insurance Idols fled 
Before the Great Improvement, 

And he, a missionary, led 

The new Religious Movement, 

Still, in the Subway, his vocation 

Is underground manipulation. 

On politics he also dotes. 

Thus oft forestalling losses; 
He's much too proud to purchase votes, 

And so he buys the Bosses. 
Though Parties change like blossoms vernal, 
Tom Ryan is the Boss Eternal. 

He deals in railroads, gaslight, coals, 

Insurance, legislatures, 
Statesmen, tobacco, human souls, 

Churches and lower natures ; 
And half the grafts that work to harm us 
Are just Consolidated Thomas. 

If market rates on men prevail, 

There's little need of crying; 
So long as Cities are for sale 

There's profit in the buying — 
Tom owns New York, and on this basis 
"Municipal Ownership" he praises. 
164 



Chauncey M. Depew 



Chauncey M. Depew 



When after-dinner speeches shrink to fewness 
And jokes are mainly laughed at for their newness, 
What will become of Chauncey M. Depewness? 
Alas, poor Yorick, how his gags do pall ! 




■"^tc^G^ 



Since some obscure, investigating vandal 
Into the dark Insurance poked a candle, 
The Josh falls flat, the game's not worth the Scandal, 
And Miller's Jest Book hangs upon the wall. 
165 



Chauncey M. Depew 

Poor Yorick ! Ah, I knew him well, Horatio; 

More fudge than fun, more side-chop than mustachio, 

An anecdote that savored of Boccaccio, 

An epigram that savored of the Ark; 
Who, clad in evening waistcoats smoothly ventral. 
Enthused the Nation's brain and heart and entrail, 
Pro P atria, Pro Tern., Pro New York Central 

(He jests at Whales who never saw a Shark !) 

Is this the head that towered among the friskers. 
The face that smiled between those weeping whiskers, 
Discoursing antique puns to cheer the riskers 

Who put their trust in Mr. Brazen Hyde? 
Ah, classic cheek and chin ! how well you jabbered, 
Your cutlass seldom sleeping in its scabbard — 
Jests that were ever idle, yet how labored ! 

While thousands spellbound sat — or ossified. 

The gayest dog of all Financial Leeches, 

When hungry men applied to him with screeches 

For bread, he gave them after-dinner speeches — 

Cold chestnuts, when they asked a bill of fare. 
By him were want and hunger ne'er neglected, 
And paupers by insurance thefts affected 
In winter flocked to him to be protected; 

They asked for fuel, he answered with hot air. 

But now his mummied mots we may entomb, or 

Bury in landslides of insurance rumor. 

What sexton, pray, would dare exhume his Humor 

And show its staleness to the cold, gray dawn? 
1 66 



Senator Nelson W. Oildrich 

Though dead men can't protest, howe'er you thwart 'em 
And neither grief nor laughter can contort 'em, 
Just try Depew's post-prandial post-mortem 

Upon the dead — and watch the graveyards yawn ! 



Senator Nelson W. Oildrich 

Within the Central Stock Exchange 
(The "Senate" called officially) 

Millionnaire Oildrich doth arrange 
The brokerage judicially. 

'Tis he who bids the Senate hinge 
The knee or bend the back awhile, 

Or who shall dance or who shall cringe 
Or who shall hold the sack awhile. 

MiUionnaire Clarke and Broker Piatt 
And Perkins and Depew, of course, 

To him discreetly doff the hat 
As other magnates do, of course. 

The party feudists cease to broil 

In this refined community; 
The Sugar mingles with the Oil, 

And Oildrich calls it "unity." 

Here henchmen flock from many a State 

Their homage to attach to him 

With Standard Oil so saturate 

You dare not touch a match to him. 
167 



Senator Nelson W. Oildrich 



The Nation's progress shall not lag 
While Oildrich loves and hallows it; 

He says the Standard's like the flag — 
The Constitution follows it. 




-<^^^ 



When Justice to the Senate comes 
She's kicked from clerk to Senator, 

From lobbies to committee-rooms — 
Then sandbagged by the Janitor. 

But all at once on bended knee 

The Senators begin to rest 

When sleek old Captain Industry 

Drills in with Private Interest. 
1 68 



Charles Warren Fairbanks 

For Oildrich says: "In God We Trusts 

Are sacredly invincible — 
And Heaven help the man who thrusts 

His nose into our principle." 

And so he stands admitted, salaamed — 
How pleasant, as it were, to see 

The Public very nicely damned 
Through Senatorial Courtesy ! 

Charles Warren Fairbanks 

To persons not too cynical 

Who worship The Subhme, 
And dote on peak and pinnacle, 

I recommend this rhyme, 
To those who care for upper air 

And do not mind a chmb. 

Ye tourists who prefer to see 

How arctic mountains fare, 
By senatorial courtesy. 

Behold Mt. Fairbanks there. 
Eternal friz, towering from his 

Ice-Presidential chair ! 

Mt. Bryan, quite volcanical. 

Pours lava fore and aft, 
And hot air most satanical 

He frequently doth waft; 

But Boreas shrieks when Fairbanks speaks 

And people hate a draft. 
169 



Charles Warren Fairbanks 

The Senate loves him tenderly 
When leavening the lump ; 

For though proportioned slenderly 
His private purse is plump, 

And clear and chill his passions rill 
Like water from the pump. 




It's Theodore's combativeness 

Which weds him to his job; 

It's Fairbanks' un-get-at-ivencss 

Which fends him from the mob ■ 
170 



Governor Samuel Whangdoodle Pennypacker 

How hopeless were the barrier 
Of snows around the Snob ! 

But ethics Senatorial 

Might easily putresce, 
Through certain immemorial 

"Committee business," 
Were't not a fact that Fairbanks' tact 

Refrigerates the mess. 

Yet sooner would fierce Kublai Khan 

From gory conquest pause 
Than Fairbanks, the Republican, 

Would mar his Party's laws. 
His faith's secure — in fact, I'm sure 

He's frozen to the Cause. 

Like Thought in palest dimity, 

Lovely and high of soul. 
He stands in chill sublimity. 

Ambition's sacred goal, 
The Ultimate of all that's great — 

The un-magnetic Pole ! 



Governor Samuel Whangdoodle Pennypacker 

Like Noah Webster he reclines 

Within his easy-chair, 
A-tapping Wisdom's sacred mines 

And culling here and there; 

Yet all he finds of perfect minds 

Up to the present day 
171 



Governor Samuel Whangdoodle Pennypacker 

Are Moses, Plato, Socrates, 
Himself, and Matthew Quay. 

He's written over iifty books — 

And some are nearly good — 
On Railroad Jobs, Successful Snobs, 

And Human Brotherhood; 




And he can speak in French and Greek 

On topics of the day. 

Like Moses, Plato, Socrates, 

Himself, and Matthew Quay. 
172 



Governor Samuel Whangdoodle Pennypacker 

Oh Philadelphia's Sabbath calm 

Sits on his holiness 
Until by chance his eyeballs glance 

Across the Daily Press — 
Then pale before his grumblous roar 

Reporters flee away, 
Who took in vain by words profane 

The name of Him and Quay. 

Yet soft he roareth since the hour 

When good Saint Graft was hurled 
By anger quick upon the Kick 

That Echoed round the World, 
And cautiously he goes by night, 

And cautiously by day, 
For fear some ripe tomato might 

Be aimed at Him or Quay. 

But when again the heavens smile 

And public wrath is spent; 
When Philadelphia sleeps awhile. 

Corrupted but content; 
Then sadly Pennypacker comes 

Forth to the graveyard gray 
And lays a grateful wreath of plums 

Upon the Tomb of Quay. 

"O Master," 'twixt his sobs he saith, 

"When all Cartoonists die, 
When Editors all gagged to death 

'Neath broken presses lie, 
173 



Grover Cleveland 

Four noble statues I'll erect 
With public funds to pay: 

The Gilded Hog, the Yellow Dog. 
Myself, and Matthew Quay ! " 

Grover Cleveland 

With madness of the Party's tongue 
And Democratic skies o'erhung 
The Sage of Princeton walks among 

The clover. 
A votary of Pan is he, 
Close to the flowers; yet you can see 
There lights no little busy Bee 

On Grover. 

But if, beside the cabbage-stalk, 
You linger in your morning walk, 
You'll find him nothing loth to talk 

It over, 
Still wisely willing to repeat 
His phrases ponderously neat — 
In fact there's still a deal of meat 

To Grover. 

Unhke the actress grown blase, 
Forever on her "farewell play," 
He means it when he says his day 

Is over. 
He has no whim to roguishly 
Flirt with the jade Publicity — 
There's not a trace of coquetry 

In Grover. 



Grover Cleveland 

Yet he can point a Decalogue 

To lead the Faithful from the bog; 

He still can call the Yellow Dog, 

"Come Rover !" 
Though Age to Greatness oft is rude 
"Innocuous desuetude" 
Is not cjuite able to include 

Our Grover. 



I7S 



ANOTHER PEACE CONFERENCE 

"Come here, come here, football play-ers, 

Ye coaches wild and tough ! 
Why do ye slug and gouge and chug 

And raise a house so rough?" 
So up spake bluff King Theodore 

In something more than bluff. 




The football coaches up have came 

And stood them in a row 

With blushing cheek, and naught they speak 

Except to mutter low, 
176 



Another Peace Conference 

" O mighty one, the things we done 
We done in wrath, we know ! " 

Then loud doth roar King Theodore 

A-kicking up his feet, 
"To snarl and fight and gouge and bite, 

Is neither meet nor meat — 
To strew the field with vertebrse, 

Is this an act discreet? 

"Ye call it feetball that ye play, 

Yet this hath no avail — 
How can ye play the ball of feet 

With fist and tooth and nail?" 
(Thrice triply groan the dour coach-es, 

Their blushing cheeks grown pale.) 

"'Tis my command: ye must not play 
With teeth and nails and fists ; 

In evening clo'es and varnished shoes 
Go ye upon the lists — 

Paste not the foeman in the eye. 
But slap him on the wrists. 

"Let football never be so rough 

As soil a tie of lawn 
As spoil the crease upon your knees 

Or smear your gloves of fawn — 
Be gentle, or I'll wring your necks ! 

Avaunt, ye mutts ! Be gone ! ! " 

N 177 



Another Peace Conference 

So forth they fare, and Theodore 

Sitteth his throne so high, 
A Colt's revolver in his boots, 

A stab-knife at his thigh, 
And with the sheath he picks his teeth 

And sigheth a kingly sigh. 



178 





THE BALLAD OF SAGAMORE HILL 

IS morning, and King Theodore 

Upon his throne sits he 
As bhthely as a King can sit 

Within a free countree, 
And now he thinks of submarines, 

And now of peace and war. 
His royal robe he handeth Loeb, 

Then wireth to the Czar : — 

"Come off, come off, thou Great White 
Czar, 
Come off thy horse so high ! 
Send envoys straight and arbitrate 

Thy diplomatic pie." 
Then straightway to the Mik-a-doo 

This letter he doth hmn, 
"Come off thy perch, thou Morning Sun, 
And do the same as him ! " 

Then straightway from the Rising Sun 

Come envoys three times three, 

Komura neat and Sato sweet, 

(An Irish Japanee). 
179 



The Ballad of Sagamore Hill 

Small men are they with domy brains, 

And in their fingers gaunt 
A list of seven hundred things 

They positively want. 

Then straightway from St. Petersburg 

Come envoys six times two, 
De Witty grand and Rosen bland 

And Nebotoffkatoo — 
Volkyrieoffskygrandovitch — 

(Here see the author's note, 
"The balance of that noble name 

Came on another boat.") 
'Twas on the royal yacht May-flower, 

They met, that noble crew. 
"De Witty grand, shake Sato's hand — 

Komura, how-dee-do ! " 
While forty thousand gun-salutes 

Concuss on Oyster Bay. 
A proud man is King Theodore, 

Upon that trysting day ! 

To Portsmouth town, to Portsmouth town, 

The sweating envoys puff, 
To speak of tin and Saghalien 

And eke to bluff and bluff — 
But Theodore at Oyster Bay 

Doth while the times between 
By taking trips and dives and dips 

Within his submarine. 

For many a day the Japanees 

Uphold their fingers gaunt, 
i8o 



The Ballad of Sagamore Hill 

And mention seven hundred things 

They positively want — 
For many a day the Muscovites 

Down-plant their Russian shoes, 
And mention seven hundred things 

They positive refuse. 

Till haply from his submarine 

King Theodore doth peep 
And stops a wireless telegram 

That buzzeth o'er the deep : 
"O Theodore, O goodly King, 

The envoys call our bluff — 
Despite the fuss the stubborn Russ 

Disgorgeth not the stuff.'''' 

"Come hither, Mr. Serge de Witt!" 

King Theodore doth say, 
"Now tell me quick by the Big Stick 

Why dost refuse to pay?" 
"Come hither, Baron Kom-u-ra, 

And sit upon my lap — 
Why dost thou cuss and make a fuss 

Thou naughty, naughty Jap?" 

To Portsmouth back, to Portsmouth back, 

The envoys then do flee, 
And each is sad and mild and meek 

As an envoy ought to be, 
And as they speak of Terms of Peace 

Politeness doth ensue — 

Like Prince Alphonze and Duke Gaston, 

'Tisever "After vou!" 
' i8i 



The Ballad of Sagamore Hill 

So soon the terms of Peace are signed 

And put upon a shelf, 
And Theodore doth straightway take 

Great credit to himself — 
The bugles call and roses fall 

On good King Theodore, 
As round the Stick the kodaks click 

Full twelve times thirty-four. 

* * * * 

And now when ancient grandsires sit 

Within the evening gray. 
And oysters frolic noisilee 

All over Oyster Bay, 
The graybeard tells his little niece 

How Theodore did trek 
To drag the gentle Bird of Peace 

To Portsmouth — by the neck. 



/^\p^ 




<:^^^^^« 



} Senators. 



JULIUS SEIZER 

Cast of Characters 

A Shakesperian Tragedy with American Lines 

Julius Seizer Roosevelt. 

Bailycus. 

Chauncey M. Depewcus, 

Aldrica, 

Metellius Spooner, 

ToMMius Plattus, J 

Cassius Cannon, 1 ^ . , - ^. c • 

' I Conspirators against Seizer. 

Brutus Tillmanius, J 

Henricus Wattersonius, a Teacher of Rhetoric. 

WiLLio Hearstus, 1 rj. ., 

' I Tribunes. 

Bryanitis, J 

Grover Clevelandus, 1 

BiLLio Tapt, !- Imperial Heavy Dragoons. 

Magoonus, j 

Marc Anthony Loeb, a Funeral Director. 

Fairbankus, a Refrigerator. 

Trusts, Rebates, Reformers, Commoners, etc. 

ACT I 

(The White House. Certain Commoners are dancing on the 
village green. Enter Hearstus and Bryanitis.) 
Hearst. : Hence ! home, you idle creatures, get you home : 
Is this a comic section that you dance 

183 



Julius Seizer 




In misfit clothes without the union label 

To indicate your jobs ? What trade art thou ? 

1ST CoMM. : Please, sir, I am a grafter. 

Bryan.: Where is thy rebate, then, and railroad pass? 
You, sir, what trade art thou? 

2D CoMM. : Truly, sir, before I became a lobbyist I was a 
cobbler. I have but recently traded the awl for the haul. 
Later I exchanged the awl for the oil and took orders from 
Uncle John. 

Bryan. : By gum, by Styx, bi-metallism, man ! 



Julius Seizer 

You call yourself a Commoner — O, fudge ! 
Why stand you here with fingers manicured, 
Your shirt-studs flashing phoney-looking stones ? 

1ST CoMM. : Most noble sir, we linger here to see J. 
Seizer Roosevelt ride the elephant. 

Hearst. : You blocks, you dubs, you Philadelphia gas 
Whom oft in idiotorials I've told 
To vote for Me and Happy Hooligan, 
The Katzen jammer Twins and Maud, the Mule, 
Why have ye went and gone and done this thing ? 

Bryan. : Key down, Bill, please — here comes our Un- 
kular Unk. (Exeunt.) 

(Thunder and lightning — enter Brutus Tillmanius and 
Cassius Cannon.) 
Cann. : Say, Brutus, may I call you Brute, for short ? 
Come, drop that pitchfork — what's the matter, Ben ? 
Insulting of the President again ? 

Till. : O, for the club of Hercules to crack 
That haughty Ted in his vainglorious teeth ! 
Or might some Titan lend me his Big Stick — (Applause 
without.) 
Cann. : What means this shouting ? I do fear the people 
Choose Teddy for their king. 

Till. : If this keeps up I 

must revive the Minor Morris scandal. 

(Salvo without, "Nobody Works in Panama.'^ Enter 
Seizer Roosevelt, followed by Marc Anthony 
LoEB, Grover Clevelandus, Billio Taft, 
Chauncey M. Depewcus, and other Senators.) 
But, look you, Cassius, 
The angry Seizer seems to show his grin ! 

185 



Julius Seizer 

V. 

Seizer : Let me have men about me that are fat {point- 
ing to Taft), 
Sleek-headed men and such as sleep o' nights. 
Yond Cannon hath a lean and hungry look : 
He works too hard ; such men are dangerous. 

LoEB : Keep cool, Imperial Seizer — he's quite tame. 
Look how his toga bags across the knees ; 
Behold ! the bunch of broomstraws on his chin 
Proclaims his simple, cornfed origin. 

Seiz. : Cornfed, perhaps; but simple, I don't think ! 
Come, Conscript Fathers, join me in a drink. 

Depewcus: Here is a joke I've often used before: 
He drinks hot Scotch who drinks with Theodore. {Ap- 
plause.) 
{Senators stampede after Seizer, leaving Wattersonius 
and TiLLMANius together. Thunder and lightning.) 

Watt.: Gad, seh ! that Seizer seizes everything — 
Canals, the Constitution, treaty-rights — 

Till.: Dog-pasted, gorgon-headed Grand Mogul, 
Spectacled chum of Booker Washington, 
Gish-whanged, gr-r-r-r-oo, wind-strenuous bow-wow!! 

Watt. : Gad, seh ! those expletives outmatch my own — 
I'll put 'em in the Courier-Journal. 

Till. : Nit ! 

Those copyrighted cuss-words shall be used 
To-morrow in my speech before the Senate. 
{Enter Cassius Cannon with Bailycus. Sneaky music.) 

Watt. : Hist, friend ! I think I hear 

The soft stand-patter of Jo Cannon's feet. 

How now, Republican ! Why limpst thou so ? 

Cann. : These shoes, the gift of my constituents 
i86 



Julius Seizer 

In South Carolina, pinch across the instep. 
This shirt (a Christmas present) doesn't wash 
So very well. 'Tis shrunk around the armholes. 

Till. : Thou shouldst not look a gift-shirt in the mouth. 

Cann. : Now to our plot, which is poUtically 
To stab Imperial Seizer in the neck. 
Let's carve him as a dish fit for the gods. 
I hate a messy job. Let's leave him looking 
Quite neat and statesmanlike, and not as if 
He'd just been chewed by Colorado wildcats. 

Baily. : Aha, say ! let's gag 
His Royal Teds 
E'en as we gagged his San Domingo treaty ! 

Cann. : E'en as the Senate strangles any law 
Not paid for by the Trusts. 

Till.: Jigger! here comes a cop! {They disperse.) 

ACT II 

{Executive offices, White House. Enter Seizer, followed by 
Bailycus, Eldrica, Chauncey Depewcus, Cannon, 
Tillmanius, Wattersonius, Hearstus, Bryanitis, 
etc.) 
Seizer: Now to our muttons — or, to be exact, 
The Beef Trust. 

Bail. : O Imperial Teds, permit 

Me to present this bill — a bill to regulate 
The sale of gooseberries in Madagascar. 
{Enter Reporter.) 
Rep. : Where is my boss, great Hearstus ? 
Hearst. : Here I am. 

Please send the news to all my papers quick, 



Julius Seizer 



And say that Seizer has been (almost) killed. 

Rep. : But Seizer hath not yet been (almost) killed. 

Hearst. : You inexperienced cub ! say, don't you know 
That Hearstus' papers always get the news 
Four hours before it happens ? {Exit Reporter. 

Seizer : Ah, dee-Hghted ! 

{Enter Taft, disguised as Chinese laundry man.) 

Taft : Founder of six repubncs, hail, all hail ! 
Before our boycott followers from Shanghai 
I would present the Chinese Laundry Bill, 




Cann. : A bill to raise the tariff on fried eggs. {Presents 

paper.) 
Till. : A bill to dam the Panama Ganal. {Presents 

paper.) 

Seiz. : Hold on, sweet statesmen ; since ye have not passed 

My Ready Rule for Regulating Rates 

189 



Julius Seizer 

All: O, Seizer! 

Seizer : Hence ! wilt ye lift up Olympus ? 
Cann. : Take that ! (Stabs Seizer with a hickory stick.) 
Depewcus : And that ! (Stabs him with a very dull pun.) 
Fairbankus : And that ! (Stabs him with an icicle.) 
Seiz. : £/ /k, Fairbanks ! Where's my square deal ? (He 
dies politically.) 

ACT III 

(A camp in Panama. Brutus Tillmanius and Cassius 
Cannon are in a tent playing pinochle.) 

Cann. : Hark, hark ! what is that jar which shakes the 
earth ? 

Till. : 'Tis WiUiam Taft who's had a falhng out 
With certain engineers. 

Cann. : When Taft falls out 

Of anything, there's apt to be an earthquake. 

Till. : As Shakespeare says, you have an itching palm. 

Cann. : He's wrong again. I have an itching back — 
When kind constituents send undershirts 
I wish they wouldn't send the hair-cloth kind. 

(Spirit-rappings. Enter Seizer's Ghost.) 
Hello ! Great Seizer's Ghost — I recognize 
Those spectacles which glare like window-panes 
Above piano-keys. Them teeth, them teeth ! 

Till. : Tush, tush ! Perhaps the weakness of our eyes 
Doth form this monstrous apparition. 

Cann. : Speak to me, what art thou ? 

Ghost : Thy evil spirit, Joseph ! 

Cann. : Why comest thou ? 
190 



Julius Seizer 




Ghost: To sa}^ that thou shalt see me again in the 
Philippines. 

(Ghost vanishes, kicking over stove as he goes.) 

Till. : O, durn the luck ! I thought that Teddy was 

politically dead. 

Cann. ; I ruther thunk 

191 



Julius Seizer 

That he'd bob up and seize another term. 

When Fairbanks hears of this, he'll be so mad 

'Twill almost melt the glacier on his spine. 
Till. : The wolves will howl in Washington once more — 

Hammers and hatchets can't kill Theodore ! 

(Brutus and Cassius swallow a Joint Statehood Bill, and 
commit political suicide. Enter Seizer's Ghost, fol- 
lowed by Rough Riders, Grizzly Bears, Colored Troopers, 
and other stage properties.) 



192 



THE BALLAD OF PANAMA DITCH 

There stands alone beside the Zone, 

A-trembling fore and aft, 
A man of Fate, a man of weight, 

Resembhng William Taft. 
On solid earth his wondrous girth 

Outswells like a balloon ; 
And by his fame I know that same is 

Governor Magoon. 

Eleven hundred engineers 

Stand forth in sullen fit. 
And passing by they loudly cry, 

"We're going for to quit!" 
And fifteen thousand colored men 

To Governor Magoon 
Inquiring turn, just for to learn, 

"Please, when will it be noon?" 

O, sultrilee and languidlee 

The tropic pulse doth throb, 
And languid spurt the loads of dirt, 

And languid moves the job ; 
Aloft among the jib-jib trees 

Sit ravens many a score, 
Who look askance with cynic glance 

And croak, " Forevermore ! " 
o 193 



The Ballad of Panama Ditch 

But, hist ! among the waving palms 

A Man comes riding bold, 
A journalist whose good right fist 

A fountain pen doth hold — 
Then every black man on the job 

Shrieks high a wail of woe. 
And Gov. Magoon falls in a swoon — 

'Tis Poultney Big-e-low ! 

"O, Poultney, Poultney Big-e-low, 

For very fright I swoon. 
Why hast thou thus diskivered us ? " 

Quoth Governor Magoon. 
"O, Mac Magoon, O, Mac Magoon, 

Thou hireling slave of Taft, 
Lo, I have came to write thy name 

And damn thy ditch as graft." 

Then backward to his trusty ship 

P. Big-e-low doth crunch, 
"My Captain hale, set sail, set sail — 

We will not stop for lunch !" 
And eke he walks the quarter-deck 

And mutters in his huff, 
And eke statistics he doth write 

Upon his milk-white cuff. 

At Washington, at Washington, 

Where Government doth dwell, 

The King cries, "Ha! our Panama, 

By all reports, doth well, 
194 



The Ballad of Panama Ditch 

My broiling toilers moil the soil 

Where sleeps the Yellow Jack" — 

(Just then the ship of Big-e-low 
Floats up the Pat O'Mac). 

And Taft pales even to the chin 

When Big-e-low he seeth, 
And on the shore King Theodore 

Pales even to the teeth; 
But Big-e-low outcries, "So-ho! 

I spring no empty bluff — 
I have the shame of Panama 

Here written on my cuff." 

"We're lost, Sir Taft," quoth Theodore, 

"Unless, ere 'tis too late, 
We send a bunch of Congressmen 

For to in-vest-i-gate." 
So forty tons of congressmen 

Of minds memorial 
They qiiickly ship upon a trip 

To see the great Canal. 

And on the site of the Canal 

The grave Committee stand 
And chew and smoke and deftly poke 

Their canes into the sand. 
But ere the hour of noon arrives 

Back turns that learned bunch — 
Like Mr. Poultney Big-e-low, 

They cannot stop for lunch. 
195 



The Ballad of Panama Ditch 

So now, when haughty engineers 

Grow grumpy and resign, 
And labor-fearing blackamoors 

Upon their spades recline, 
The tale of Poultney Big-e-low 

Is oft repeated o'er; 
But the ravens look at the Canal 

And croak, " Forevermore ! " 



196 



A LIVELY PARALLEL 

Al Raschid, to tradition dear, 
Possessed a careful Grand Vizier 
Who kept his letters neat and nice, 
Met visitors and gave advice. 
And otherwise was useful too — 
Like Secretary Cortelyou. 

Al Raschid, journeying through the land, 
Dropped wisdom's pearls on every hand, 
Till Islam, with a deep salaam. 
Cried, "Allah praise the epigram!" 
But his Vizier just sat and drew 
His salary — like Cortelyou. 

When delegates of every sort 
Came flocking to Al Raschid 's court, 
If there was anything that lacked 
In smooth diplomacy and tact, 
'Twas his Vizier who always knew — 
Like Secretary Cortelyou. 

A hundred poets sang the praise 

Of great Al Raschid's golden days. 

But few among the singers there 

Observed the Man behind the Chair, 

W^ho told the Sultan what to do — 

Like Secretary Cortelyou. 
197 



A Lively Parallel 

But where would be the good Sul-tan 
Without that quiet, handy man 
To smooth his road, to ease his pains, 
To open letters and campaigns? 
I'll give the Grand Vizier his due — 
And likewise Mr. Cortelyou. 



MONROE DOCTRININGS 

We have got our little foot in the Canal, 

We have got the languid Cuban 'neath our eyes, 
W^e have placed oar index finger on the lazy San Dominger, 

And we're teaching Porto Rico to be wise. 
We are asking Mister Castro won't he please 

Discontinue his piratical campaigns; 
Yet the dark-skinned Latin Jingo only mutters, "Dirty 
Gringo ! " 

Which is all the thanks we're getting for our pains. 

Here's a bumper to the doctrine of Monroe, roe, roe, 
And the neighbors whom we cannot let alone ; 

Through the thirst for diagnosis we're inserting our proboscis 
Into everybody's business but our own. 

We are worrying from Texas to the Horn, 
We are training guns on Germany's advance, 

While we shake the mail-clad mitten at the hunger of the 
Briton, 
And suggest, "Monsieur, keep off the map!" to France. 

Does the gentle South American rejoice 

At our fatherly protection from the Powers? 

No, alas ! the dusky Jingo merely hisses, "Yankee Gringo ! " 

To reward this large philanthropy of ours. 
199 



Monroe Doctrinings 

Here's a bumper to the doctrine of Monroe, roe, roe, 
Which we follow when we've nothing else to do, 

While we spend our golden billions to protect the rag-tag 
millions. 
And I think they're making fun of us, don't you? 



200 



HEROES: PERISHABLE GOODS 

Heroes are like sulphur matches, 

Scratched and lit, then thrown away. 
Every Dewey has his arches, 

Every Dowie has his day. 
Eggs or laurels, shouts or hisses, 

For an hour Fame's tributes voice, 
Brief, alas! as Hobson's kisses 

(Silence, now, is Hobson's choice). 

Pastor Wagner, like a stogie 

Smoked and spurned, lies on the floor; 
Even the Rockefeller Bogie 

Scarcely scares us any more; 
And already Life Insurance 

Hardly fills the public bill — 
In the name of all endurance 

Can't we get another thrill? 

We may search from Maine to Dawson 

Vainly in our hero-hunt — 
How can Truthful Thomas Lawson 

Dish us up another stunt 
Painting Wall Street's job and stock work 

In a way to wreck the town? 

20I 



Heroes : Perishable Goods 

Can it be that Lawson's clockwork 
Is discreetly running down? 

Gods financial, briefly risen 

To the Seats of the Admired, 
Go to Newport or to prison 

And are quietly retired. 
Gods, alas for your endeavor 

To retain the pubhc view — 
Nothing seems to last forever; 

No, not even C. Depew ! 




Hero-worship suicidal's 

Scarce to be encouraged, sir — 
202 



Heroes : Perishable Goods 

All these perishable idols 
Disconcert the worshipper. 

But while hands of desecration 
Tip each god from off his shelf 

We have yet one consolation — 
Teddy Roosevelt's still Himself ! 



203 



ETHICS OF PIRACY 

I WONDER if Morgan the Pirate, 

When plunder had glutted his heart, 
Gave part of the junk from the ships he had sunk 

To help some Museum of Art ; 
If he gave up the role of "collector of toll" 

And became a Collector of Art ? 

I wonder if Genghis the Butcher, 

When he'd trampled down nations like grass. 
Retired with his share, when he'd lost all his hair, 

And started a Sunday-school class; 
If he turned his past under and used half his plunder 

In running a Sunday-school class? 

I wonder if Roger the Rover, 

When millions in looting he made. 
Built Hbraries grand on the jolly mainland 

To honor Success and "free trade"; 
If he founded a college of nautical knowledge 

Where Pirates could study their trade? 

I wonder, I wonder, I wonder. 

If Pirates were ever the same, 
Ever trying to lend a respectable trend 

To the jaunty old buccaneer game ; 
Or is it because of our Piracy Laws 

That philanthropists enter the game? 

204 



A FABLE FOR SOCIALISTS 

A Deer, a Ploughhorse, and a Snail 
Met once in Jove's Olympian vale, 

And as the games were then apace 
They all were entered in a race. 

Upon the scratch they placed the toe; 
The signal came, "Get ready — go!" 

So Snail and Deer and clumsy Horse 
At divers speeds went down the Course. 

When Mr. Deer had run a mile 

The Horse two rods had paced in style. 

While Willie Snail was in the race 
Six inches from the starting place. 

Now Willie Snail had filled his gorge 
With Tolstoi, Shaw, and Henry George; 

So, when the test of speed was done, 
He cried, "It was unfairly run ! 

"When we have all our goal to seek. 
Shall swift and strong oppress the weak? 

"Cooperation's what we need — 

Let's all maintain an even speed." 
205 



A Fable for Socialists 

And so again the race was tried, 
The racers standing side by side, 

And at the signal onward pressed, 
Each creeping slowly, breast to breast. 

An hour passed by, a day, a week, 
But still they kept their plodding meek. 

The Ploughhorse dozed, the wild Deer slept, 
"Go slow!" the Snail cried as he crept. 

Great Jove observed this from on high 
And yawned and blinked his god-like eye. 

"That may be fair for all," he said, 
"But as a race it's pretty dead." 



206 



PRACTICAL ALCHEMISTS 

In good old mediaeval times, 

The days of fools and saints and crimes, 

The Alchemists in pots and pans strange-looking soups 
were stewing. 
By these manoeuvres, so they said, 
They'd make gold nuggets out of lead — 

But they were doomed to grief and tears, for there was 
nothing doing. 

But time has taught us just a few. 
And we have learned a thing or two. 

The Alchemists are dead, you ask ? Nay, nay, my son and 
daughter. 
For in that magic street called Wall, 
In buildings short and buildings tall. 

Stand many Wizards making gold from paper, wind, and 
water. 

I've seen a Wizard take a mine 

(Bought for a dollar forty-nine), 

A vacant, worthless hole with absolutely nothing in it, 

And this he'd mention thus and so : 

"The Persiflage Gold Mining Co. — 

Come in and get your Dividends, a Dollar Every Minute !" 

These words he sent by many mails ; 

The dollars came in stacks and bales — 

207 



Practical Alchemists 

Which shows how every shark that swims finds suckers by 
the biUions. 
He had no money to begin, 
He never put a dollar in; 

Yet when he went to Ossining, he'd cleaned up thirty 
miUions ! 

In simple ages long ago 

The Alchemists were pretty slow; 

They spent their time with chemicals a-brewing and 
a-stewing — 
If they had put their empty dream 
Into a fake investment scheme, 

They would have had their gold all right and lots of doings 
doing. 



208 



AL HALE SPRING! 
(Dedicated to A w C e.) 

O JENTIL Spring, O jentil Spring ! 

I'm glad that u. r. heer. 
O joi ! O blis ! thar'z no such thing 

Az wintry windz to feer. 
Let koal strikes hapen az thay pleez — 
When spring iz heer we cannot freez. 

O prity burdz, O warbling burdz ! 

What soro hav u. now? 
(Grate Scot ! I kannot spel the wurdz 

That sizzle 'neeth my brow 
Sins A. Karnaygy spoyld the rulz 
We ust to hav in gramar skulz.) 

O April showrz, O buding flowrz, 
Cowslip and fresh blu-bel, 

And rozes, too, and pozes, too, 
I won't attempt to spel; 

Bekawz if I shud try u. mite 

Not rekogniz the flowrz on site. 

On every breez thar kumz a sneez 

Of rite good feloship 
p 209 



Al Hale Spring ! 

By which we no that Spring haz came 
And brung with it la grip. 

But I must rite my song to-nite 
Tho Northern winds prevail. 

So joi ! I sing to jentil Spring 
Al hale, al hale, al hale ! ! 



2IO 



STATESMEN OF FUTURITY 

(When the sleeper wakes in Washington, 2004.) 

"Yes," said the New American, 

"That happened many years ago, 
When we were governed by the plan 

Of Webster, Lincoln, or Monroe; 
But now we are a Foreign Power 

Of many nations nicely blent, 
W'ith immigration running our 

Good Anglo Saxon government. 

"Yon statesman with the wide frock coat — 

You don't know him ? That's Hans von Raus, 
Republican from Maine ; his vote 

Controls three-quarters of the House. 
That's Congressman Martini there. 

And Representative O 'Toole. 
There's Ole Olesen — statesmen swear 

By his world-famous Unit Rule. 

"A moment's passing notice give 

To yon dark member with the scar: 
Manila's representative, 

Emilio de Malabar. 
You ask me who's that portly gent 

Whom they are cheering down the line? 
Why, don't you know the President ? 

That's Abraham J. Cohenstein. 



Statesmen of Futurity 

"You ask for some familiar name 

Which you were once accustomed to. 
Our times, of course, are not the same; 

And Yankee names are rather few. 
You see yon poor old codger with 

The look of one o'er fond of drink? 
He's Honorable Henry Smith — 

The White House Janitor, I think." 



212 



ABDUL HAMID: AN APPRECIATION 

Virtuous monarch and cautious Saladin, 

Heir of Mohammed and Balance of Power, 
Poorer than Lazarus, rich as Aladdin, 

Satan's left member and Heaven's right bower, 
What though the preachers decry your barbarity, 

What though the Nations extinction advise? 
Let the true Koran extol you for charity — 
Abdul the Merciful, Hamid the Wise ! 
What though we're blocked by you. 
What though we're shocked by you, 
Sceptres are hocked by you under our eyes, 
Yet there's serenity 
In your obscenity, 
Abdul the Merciful, Hamid the Wise ! 

Guided by Heaven you scourge the Armenian 
(When you need widows to stock your hareem), 

Smoother your work than Mafia or Fenian, 
Swifter your plans than a Borgia's dream. 

You are a problem that calls for unravelling. 
Dense as the Sphinx — and as permanent too — 

Europe seems eager to set you a-tra veiling — 

Allah il allah, but what can she do? 
213 



Abdul Hamid : An Appreciation 



Vain is their phosphorus 
Aimed at the Bosphorus, 
Still your mien prosperous malice defies, 
And your solemnity, 




Cheating indemnity, 

Beggars comparison, Hamid the Wise ! 
214 



Abdul Hamid : An Appreciation 

Cutting and slashing's an ancient tradition you 

Learned from your ancestors hundred or more; 
Still you may see, when the Nations partition you, 

Cutting and slashing go on as of yore. 
Allah is great, and the Powers may still juggle you. 
Tilting your throne on the balance they prize — 
Better breathe carefully lest in the struggle you 
Ruin your equipoise, Hamid the Wise ! 
King problematical, 
Yet operatical. 
That you're fanatical does not surprise; 
What we'd all care to do 
None of us dare to do, 
So here's long life to you, Hamid the Wise ! 



215 



THE U. S. SENATE: AN APPRECIATION 

Again the great Senate in session 

We'll view with a spasm of pride, 
Bright angels of Solon's profession, 

With waistcoats cut piously wide. 
Strong pillars on which a great Nation 

May lean with Prosperity decked. 
(If you don't admire this ovation, 

Pray what are you led to expect?) 

Hear all those mentalities humming 

O'er many a weighty affair, — - 
That the Beef Trust may have all that's coming, 

That Railroads shan't want for their share, 
That the lordly Insurance Promoters 

Shall take what they choose to select. 
(If this doesn't tickle the Voters, 

Pray what are you led to expect?) 

There's Senator Hush in the lobby 

(He represents Land Frauds and Coal), 

There's Senator Rebate, whose hobby 

Is Stockyards (they purchased his soul), 

There's Senator Tariff, whose thunder 
Proclaims he has Steel to protect. 

(Do yoii get protection, you wonder? 

Pray what are you led to expect?) 
216 



The U. S. Senate : An Appreciation 

The fact which makes pessimists scoff is 

The fact that the flocks are all geese; 
They hurry the wolves into office, 

Then popular interests cease. 
When bribes run as high as the steeple 

And laws come by railroad direct, 
If the Senate won't speak for the People, 

Pray what can the People expect? 



217 



A RHYME OF PURE REASON 

A Christian Science Proselyte, 
Alone upon a mountain height, 

Was Pondering upon the vain 
Belief in non-existent Pain, 

How nervous Dread of any kind 
Was an Illusion of the Mind, 

When coming down the mountain side 
A dreadful Lion he espied. 

The Proselyte said, "Mercy me!" 
And quickly Scuttled up a Tree. 

Next Morning at the rise of sun 
There came an Unconverted One 

Who saw the Proselyte at bay 
And drove the hungry Beast away. 

The Cynic said, "Aha! I see 

Your Claim has got you up a Tree." 

"Your judgment," said the Proselyte, 
"Arises from Imperfect Sight. 

"A Lion, to a Soul refined. 
Is an Illusion of the Mind." 

2X8 



A Rhyme of Pure Reason 

"If that's the Case," the Cynic said, 
"Why show these human signs of Dread? 

"Why pass the night, secure from harm, 
In yonder Elevated Palm?" 

"Friend," said the Saint, "If you but knew! 
This Tree is an Illusion, too. 

"When in a Jungle, far from Home, 
Where purely Mental Lions roam, 

"It puts one more at Ease to be 
Up some Imaginary Tree." 

"How great is Mind !" the Stranger cried, 
And went his way quite Eddy-faed. 



219 



ADVERTISEMENT 

When Cleopatra, wise old girl, 
Got gay one night and drank a pearl, 
All frugal folk cried out, "For Shame!" 
But marvelled at her just the same. 
And she was right and she was wise 
To thus get in and advertise. 

When Cheops made his subjects bid 
On contracts for a pyramid, 
He got a tomb well worth a king 
(Though not a very useful thing). 
But he was right and he was wise 
To thus get in and advertise. 

When old Diogenes began 
Pot-hunting for an honest man 
His chances for success were slim; 
But folks began discussing him — 
And he was right and he was wise 
To thus get in and advertise. 

When Dr. Johnson made a spree 
Of forty-seven cups of tea, 
He surely showed his savoir faire 
By having Mr. Boswell there — • 
And he was right and he was wise 
To thus get in and advertise. 



Advertisement 

'Tis sad, but it is true, the same, 
That those who fill the Book of Fame 
Have left their records, more or less, 
Through some tremendous foolishness — 
Yet they were right and they were wise 
To thus get in and advertise. 

Blame not the actress out of funds 
Who plans to lose her diamonds, 
Blame not the millionnaire who capers 
To get his actions in the papers; 
They've little to immortahze. 
But they at least can advertise. 



221 



SYMPTOMS OF GREATNESS 

'Tis said that Edgar Allan Poe 

From classic halls of knowledge 
Was curtly asked to pack and go. 
If this is so 
I'm much like Poe 

(I, too, was fired from college). 

And Bunyan, when ill-fortune knocked, 

His genius no avail, 
In prison was securely locked, 
His trinkets hocked — 
Pray be not shocked 

(I, too, have been in jail). 

And Epictetus, knowing well 

His soul by gods enthused, 
His manuscripts could never sell; 
By which I spell 
A parallel 

(I've often been refused). 

Nol Goldsmith was a stupid Mike 
As all his friends well knew. 

I have some qualities which strike 

My friends as like 

That classic tike 

(For I am stupid, too). 

222 



Symptoms of Greatness 

The faults of genius all are mine 
And proudly I command 'em, 

An inspiration and a sign 

That I'm in line 

To live and shine 

(Quod erat demonstrandum). 



223 



" PROVINCIAL " 

Outside New York, in some vague place, 
There lives a stranger, outland race 
Who bear the infinite disgrace 

Of being called "Provincial." 
Their minds are rudimentary; 
They have no God or Tammany; 
Their clothing, cut outrageously, 

Is shockingly "Provincial." 

To them R. Mansfield sometimes goes, 
And sometimes Heinrich Conried shows 
His Parsifalians, for he knows 

There's money in "Provincials." 
But if these artists fail to make 
A hit, their worldly heads they shake, 
"To show high art's a great mistake 

Among the rude ' Provincials.' " 

All but New York is thus effaced, 

Chicago is a barren waste, 

St. Louis seven times disgraced 

By that black word "Provincial." 

And if her sister cities show 

New York a thing that she should know. 

She simply hfts her eyebrows, "Oh," 

Quite decent — but "Provincial." 
224 



YOU MAY LEAD A HORSE TO WATER 

Doubtless we are sick with knowledge 
And the brain too harshly rules; 

Every crossroads has its college, 
Every town its graded schools. 

And the slums are full of classes 

Masked in charitable guise, 
Where the children of the masses 

May become a httle wise. 

And the master, uncomplaining, 

Moves among the western tribes, 

Gives the Siwash mental training. 
Turns Apaches into scribes. 

While the Filipino teachers 

In Luzon and Malabar 
Show the little brown-skinned creatures 

What the vulgar fractions are. 

Yet Apaches get their whiskey. 

And their war-paint — when they can ; 
And rebellion's germ is frisky 

In the sallow yellow man. 
Q 225 



You May Lead a Horse to Water 

And in vain wise words we utter 
To the slum-child's tender age; 

For the sparrow seeks the gutter 
When he quits his tidy cage. 

Though the Angels gladly patter 

At fair Wisdom's fountain-brink, 

You may lead a horse to water; 

But you cannot make him — think. 



226 



SONG OF THE UNIMPROVED 

If George Ade wrote like Henry James, 
And Dooley wrote like Howells, 

And Lawson wrote like Andrew Lang, 
In esoteric growls, 

How difficult our world would be, 

How lacking in variety ! 

If Morgan lived the simple life, 

If Ireland's folk were free. 
If Newport's gilded gang became 

A Quaker colony, 
How would our patience then give out, 
With nothing new to talk about? 

If Melba, like Fay Templeton, 

Should dance in fol-de-rol. 
If Peter Dailey were engaged 

To sing in "Parsifal," 
Would not the game seem new and strange, 
A little sadder for the change? 

If Russell Sage, in reckless mood. 

Gave libraries away. 
If William Jennings should declare 

He'd nothing more to say. 

Wouldn't there sweep across the nation 

A certain sense of desolation? 
229 



Song of the Unimproved 

For we have made our Pantheon, 

Describe it as you will, 
And though our idols are of clay, 

By Jove, we love 'em still ! 
And it would pain us to the souls 
To give old favorites new roles. 



230 



MR. SHAW'S PROFESSION 

Mr. Shaw's Profession: 

Something to shock the wise, 
Something to preach and something to teach, 

And something to advertise; 
Wit of a hectic flavor, 

Showing that wrong is right. 
Trying to paint the Things as they Ain't, 

Proving that soot is white. 

Mr. Shaw's Profession: 

Making The BiHous pay, 
Treading our toes and thumbing his nose 

(Which he does in the cleverest way). 
Breaking our holy relics 

Merrily over the stones. 
To cut and slash with piratical dash 

At the sign of the skull and bones. 

Mr. Shaw's Profession: 

To laugh at the sweet and clean, 
To flaunt his flams in epigrams 

Which he really doesn't mean; 
Mocking at stupid Virtue 

Like an impudent Irish elf, 

And backing his bluff with a bushel of Stuff 

Which he doesn't believe himself. 
231 



THE HEATHEN DEVIL 

(The Empress of China has purchased an automobile.) 

On the Sacred Central City now a new enchantment lies, 
And the image of Confucius looks around and blinks its 

eyes 
While the Golden Dragon wags his tail in horror and sur- 
prise — 
For Tsi An's gone out riding in her auto ! 

All the ugly Httle idols in the Temple of the Fan, 
Who have sat serene and quiet since the dynasty began, 
Now are shuddering and whispering opinions of Tsi An, 
Who's gone out buggy riding in her auto. 

In the courts the stately Mandarins with trailing plumes of 

blue 
By many a lily-maiden with a number zero shoe 
Sit idly in flirtation — for they've nothing else to do, 
Since Tsi An's gone out riding in her auto. 

No more with past offenders are the royal fishes fed. 
No more the pale reformer is to execution led, 
And the sly Provincial Viceroy serenely keeps his head — 
While Tsi An's gone out riding in her auto. 

"Great Scott!" remarked the Lord High Ying, whose in- 
dignation grows, 
"There's a Marquis to be poisoned and a Princess to 

depose ; 

232 



The Mob 

His pleasure enough to employ tooth and nail 
For a grin from his lips and a wag from his tail. 

The Mob, like the Dragon of mythical art, 
Is a wrong-headed, stupid old bluffer at heart — 
Just needing a Master in citizen's clo'es 
To lead him about with a ring in his nose ! 



239 



THE CONFESSIONS OF A PUBLIC QUESTION 

I AM a Public Question and a little past my prime, 

But I've wrestled with some pretty lively fellows in my time; 

I'm somewhat frayed and type-worn now, and scarred and 

crippled, too — 
I guess you'd wear a crutch if you'd been through what Fve 

been through. 

From China or the Philippines — it doesn't matter where — 
Into the light of public view they dragged me by the hair, 
And ere the demons of the press had fairly set me free 
A thousand editorials were jumping on to me. 

The Sun, though beaming brightly, teased me with his verbal 

chaff. 
And E. S. Martin trimmed me with a pungent paragraph, 
While Mr. Norman Hapgood, when he came to have his say. 
Touched up my solar plexus in his suave, ironic way. 

Then Mr. Brisbane, treating me in terms of Hearst and 

drink, 
Asked WHY do cattle chew the cud? and ordered me to 

THINK ! ! ! 
Next Colonel Watterson arose and peppered me with lead — 
Being a Household Word, I can't repeat the things he said. 

When Howells, in reminiscent mood, had caught me on the 

run, 

240 



The Confessions of a Public Question 

An Irish accent blocked my way — alas ! 'twas Dooley 

Dunne 
Who tickled all my lonesome ribs till I must laugh or die 
And whispered blarney in my ear — then poked me in the 

eye ! 

Oh, how he waltzed upon my head and whistled down my 

spine 
And pasted epigrams upon this dignity of mine, 
Then called in Mr. Hennessey to view my silly mien 
A-wearing of a fool's cap to "The Wearing o' the Green." 

I am a Public Question bent with bitter days and sore. 
But Fate is kind to ripe old age, and troublous times are 

o'er; 
So may I creep away to rest a quiet year or two 
In some provincial, quiet little quarterly review. 



241 



LIARS OF ALL AGES 

Here's to the Liars who pepper all history, 

Spirits too lofty for trivial facts, 
Whole-cloth contortionists, dealers in mystery. 

Marvellous tellers of marvellous acts. 
Think of your Homer, Selkirk, and Herodotus, 

Vivid in details that never occurred, 
Full of inaccurate statements to prod at us 

Gravely dished up as the gospel and word. 

Think of the jovial old Ananiases, 

Think of the Jonah who stuffed the poor whale, 
Think of Munchausen's and Rabelais' biases, 

Stopping at naught to adorn a good tale. 
See the explorer De Leon's mendacity 

Prating of Florida's Carlsbads of youth — 
Scorn not the falsehoods that proved their sagacity — 

Where would they be had they stuck to the truth? 

Seldom has battle occurred in the annals of 
Man but the Liar was there with his pad. 

Turning the rivers of truth in the channels of 
Fiction and fable, diverting though mad. 

Seldom has monarch's will gone to the surrogate, 
Seldom were nations destroyed or begun 

But what the Liar was there to prevaricate, 

Tripping high Jove on the yarns that he spun. 
242 



Liars of All Ages 

Where are the Liars renowned of antiquity, 

BHthe with a destiny brave to fulfil, 
Making immortal the fertile iniquity 

Splashed from the inkhorn and dropped from the quill ? 
Stanch, gallant souls ! stoutly still they are laboring 

Far in the East where the carnage abounds. 
There, midst the shooting and shelling and sabering, 

The War Correspondent is right on the grounds. 



243 



BEHIND THE COMIC MASK 



SONG FOR A CRACKED VOICE 

When I was young and slender, a spender, a lender, 
What gentleman adventurer was prankier than I, 

Who lustier at passes with glasses — and lasses, 

How pleasant was the look of 'em as I came jaunting by ! 
(But now there's none to sigh at me as I come creaking by.) 

Then Pegasus went loping 'twixt hoping and toping, 
A song in every dicky-bird, a scent in every rose; 

What moons for lovelorn glances, romances, and dances, 
And how the spirit of the waltz went thrilling to my toes ! 
(Egad, it's now a gouty pang goes thriUing to my toes!) 

Was I that lover frantic, romantic, and antic, 

Who found the lute in Molly's voice, the heaven in her eyes ? 
Who, madder than a hatter, talked patter? No matter. 
Call not that little, youthful ghost, but leave it where it 

lies ! 
(Dear, dear, how many winter snows have drifted where 
she lies !) 

But now I'm old and humble, why mumble and grumble 
At all the posy-linked rout that hurries laughing by ? 

Framed in my gold-rimmed glasses each lass is who passes 
And Youth is still a-twinkling in the corner of my eye. 

(How strange you cannot see it in the corner of my eye !) 



247 



FROM ROMANY TO ROME 

Upon the road to Romany 

It's stay, friend, stay ! 
There's lots o' love and lots o' time 

To linger on the way; 
Poppies for the twilight, 

Roses for the noon. 
It's happy goes as lucky goes 

To Romany in June. 

But on the road to Rome — oh 

It's march, man, march ! 
The dust is on the chariot wheels, 

The sere is on the larch; 
Helmets and javelins 

And bridles flecked with foam, — 
The flowers are dead, the world's ahead 

Upon the road to Rome. 

But on the road to Rome — ah, 

It's fight, man, fight ! 
Footman and horseman 

Treading left and right. 
Camp-fires and watch-fires 

Ruddying the gloam — 

The fields are gray and worn away 

Along the road to Rome. 
248 



From Romany to Rome 

Upon the road to Romany 

It's sing, boys, sing! 
Though rag and pack be on our back 

We'll whistle at the King. 
Wine is in the sunshine, 

Madness in the moon, 
And de'il may care the road we fare 

To Romany in June. 

Along the road to Rome, alas ! 

The glorious dust is whirled, 
Strong hearts are fierce to see 

The City of the World ; 
Yet footfall or bugle-call 

Or thunder as ye will, 
Upon the road to Romany 

The birds are calling still ! 



249 



WITH A POSY IN HIS BUTTONHOLE 

1 LIKED to see the way he stepped ; his face was crossed with 

seams, 
But sprightly as a child's it kept the freshness of its dreams, 
Or like a sage, perhaps, he saw the way to reconcile 
His gentle living to the law. We pray best when we smile. 

With a posy in his buttonhole — his brow was bald, God 
bless his soul ! 
But his step was hght and strong; 
His jaunty swagger seemed to click in cadence with his 
walking stick ; 
With a posy in his buttonhole he jogged his way along. 

A watcher in the parks he sat. I think that he preferred 
The sparrow with his gutter-chat to any singing bird, 
As one, in Fate's inclemencies, who did not choose to grieve 
Or wear his tender tragedies upon his rusty sleeve. 

With a posy in his buttonhole he puffed his pipe, and in a 
droll 
Young humor passed the throng. 
Whom the gods hate they first make sad ; but being blessed 
in being glad. 
With a posy in his buttonhole he jogged his way along. 

And some there went in broadcloth weeds, and long the face 

they drew; 

And some there went in shabby tweeds — and his were none 

too new. 

250 



With a Posy in His Buttonhole 

But when he lay with fever parched, and when his light was 

spent, 
Through the gray Gates of Death he marched, and whistled 

as he went. 

With a posy in his buttonhole — and where he lies, the merry 
soul, 
I hope the blossoms say, 
"Though Fate, the Charlatan, be vile, let her not cheat you 
of your smile. 
Pluck a posy for your buttonhole, and jog along your 
way !" 



251 



IN A JAPANESE GARDEN 

In a garden wee and cool — 
Stunted pine and fairy pool — 
Tinkling, tinkling now and then 
On her carven samisen, 
Sighing for the little man 
Gone to fight for dear Japan, 
Sits the girl, Oyucha San. 

Ah, but you were proud of heart 

When you saw his troops depart ! 

Riding like a foreign lord. 

Boots and cap and dangling sword, 

Demi-god and hero-man 

Who would make a new Japan — 

Thus he seemed, Oyucha San. 

"Good success!" I heard you pray 
On the hour he went away. 
Should the gods heed, can you guess 
What may come with "good success"? 
How his sword may change the plan 
Of the silken old Japan, 
Almond-eyed Oyucha San? 

Hear the crickets' reedy tune ! 
See the lantern of the moon 
252 



In a Japanese Garden 

Glint the lacquer on the deep 
Where the gray carp Hes asleep ! 
Why should armies scheme and plan 
Dun ambition for Japan 
Which is blessed, Oyucha San? 

How the gods may be surprised 
When Nippon grows "civilized"! 
When the spade of commerce threads 
Railroads through your iris beds; 
Vanish clogs, kimono, fan, 
Vanish beauty from Japan — 
Vanish you, Oyucha San ! 

Progress calls you, so alas ! 
Yeddo's blossom time must pass. 
Soon you'll hear the grinding mill 
Shriek and fume on Nara's hill 
O'er an ugly, changed Japan: 
And for this your little man 
Goes to war, Oyucha San. 



253 



THE SONG OF THE SAMURAI 

The sword of the Samurai gleams still 

In the arms of a new Japan ; 
Though the knights be dead, there's an ancient thrill 

That comes to the fighting man. 
Pride of a dauntless nation rings — 

Firm is his battle cry — 
List to the Nippon host that sings 

The song of the Samurai : — 

"Though our thews be small, yet our hearts are great, 

And our souls, they are souls of fire. 
Here's a sword for love, and a sword for hate, 

In the war god's hot desire. 
Who cares for Death when a passion fair 

Gives us joy by the blade to die? 
For we'll strike to the heart of the Russian bear 

With the sword of the Samurai. 

"By that long, smooth edge that our fathers wrought, 

On a forge that a god's breath blew; 
By that lacquered hilt that the artists fraught 

With the zeal that the heroes knew. 
Let us on where the northern barbarians fare. 

Flaunting their banners high — 
And we'll strike to the heart of the Russian bear 

With the sword of the Samurai. 
254 



The Song of the Samurai 

"Though their ranks, Hke the ocean, may flood the plains, 

Like breakers may beat us back ; 
Here's the blade that shall open our own warm veins 

Ere we faint in their fierce attack. 
Rather the boast of an ancient lord. 

By our own fair steel to die. 
Than with shame of defeat to pollute the sword - 

The sword of the Samurai." 

This is the song of the Samurai 

In the army of new Japan, 
Where the seeds of a world-old honor lie 

In the soul of the fighting man. 
Pride of a dauntless nation rings. 

Firm is his battle cry — 
List to the Nippon host that sings 

The song of the Samurai. 



255 



AMONG THE DEAD AT LIAO YANG 

He had no quarrel with any man, 

He knew not what they called him for; 
Yet, roll and pack upon his back, 

Ivan, the peasant, went to war. 
"The Little Father calls," he said, 

And followed, followed as he sang, 
Till on a trampled trench he lay 

Among the dead at Liao Yang. 

Not his the dream of land and power. 

The greed of gain, the dread of loss; 
He marched with orders to the field 

To bear his rifle — and his cross. 
God had ordained it, so he faced 

The pelting hail that snarled and sang, 
And gave his patient blood away 

Among the dead at Liao Yang. 

Among the glitter of his court 
In safety sat the mystic czar; 

Safe sat the scheming minister 
Who cast a careless die for war; 

They could not hear the shattered groan, 
The horrid chant of death that rang 

Where unconsulted thousands lay, 

Among the dead at Liao Yang. 
256 



Among the Dead at Liao Yang 

He had no quarrel with any man, 

He had no cause to battle for; 
Yet, roll and pack upon his back, 

Ivan, the peasant, went to war. 
A minister had made a map 

From which a deadly army sprang; 
So Ivan fell, and made no sign. 

Among the dead at Liao Yang. 



257 



THE DISCOVERERS 

The world is growing small and the seas are gathered all 
Into the hands of Commerce and the fleets that span the deep, 

And the colonies extend to Earth'' s remotest end, 

While the Seekers who discovered them — and ij they can 
— may sleep. 

At midnight when the merchant ships lie anchored in the 
stream, 

When city's roofs beneath the moon all pale and silver gleam, 

When at the wharves the liners lie, by creaking ropes con- 
fined, 

A strange fleet sails into the bay and leaves no wake behind. 

They leave no wake behind, but on and ever on they go. 
And at their high and antique bows no signal lanterns glow ; 
But in the look-outs gray and dim the pale-faced watchers 

stand. 
As, pointing to the sleeping town, they cry, "New land! 

New land ! " 

"New land !" they cry as the fleet shifts by the quays and 

slips and docks, 
The steel-built monsters on the hills, the cluttered towers 

and clocks, 
These sky-piled heights where men have wrought with craft 

and pain and gold 
Since first the wave-tired Seekers hailed the virgin lands of 

old. 

258 



The Discoverers 

One looks with Hudson's fiery gaze and landward stares 

abroad, 
And one, like Serra gowned and shorn, upbears the cross of 

God; 
Some there are clad in goodly garb like hero men of Greece, 
Like Jason and his blood-pledged crew who sought the 

Golden Fleece. 

And some bear semblance dark and high in glance of fierce 

disdain 
To the ocean-faring cavahers who leagued the world for 

Spain ; 
And some are bearded men and fair with girded sinews 

strong, 
Who row their swan-beaked boats as they lift their harsh 

Jutlandic song. 

And their eyes outyearn and their eyes outburn to the town 

on the moon-steeped height. 
As those who have come again to claim the dream that is 

theirs by right; 
But on each brow and in each eye, as they palely scan the 

shore, 
Is the look that man shall wear but once and man can wear no 

more. 

"Our bones," they cry, "have crumbled and passed in many 

a far countree. 
And some are dust in a godly grave, and some in the floor of 

the sea ; 
But our hearts have beat to the Tune of the Worlds and 

flown to the cry of the West — 
259 



The Discoverers 

What think ye, then, that our souls can sleep, that our wan- 
dering ships can rest? 

"For we have traced new ocean paths where none have 

gone before, 
And we have borne the flags of kings on many a maiden 

shore ; 
Companions of the sinking sun, hot — fevering for the 

quest — 
What think ye, then, that our souls can sleep, that our 

wandering ships can rest? 

"Year unto year our goblin fleet has slipped from bay to bay. 
And a thousand more, and a thousand more, shall we sail 

till the Judgment Day, 
And your cities of steel shall be tumbled down and the new 

on the old shall stand. 
But our eyes shall strain through the night in vain for the 

thing that is not — New Land." 

The world is growing small and the seas are gathered all 
Into the hands of Commerce and the fleets that span the deep, 

And the colonies extend to Earth''s remotest end, 

While the Seekers who discovered them — and if they can 
— may sleep. 



260 



HOME BOUND 

(JOHN PAUL JONES) 

Around the straits the white fleet runs 

With its historic mould ; 
The salvo of saluting guns 

Startles the ghosts of old. 
No more to He with stranger graves 

Forgotten and alone, 
Again he's on the clean blue waves 

With a Squadron of his own ! 

Earth-rehc of a gallant heart, 

Dust of the Privateers, 
How could it lie so far apart 

Through all these stirring years ? 
Behold these steel-constructed braves 

From wooden navies grown. — 
Again he's on the clean, blue waves 

With a Squadron of his own ! 

See you upon the moonHt tide 

Yon phantom vessel sulk; 
Once more the Serapis doth ride 

Upon her battered hulk. 
Mark ye, good foemen, from your graves 

The flag for battle flown 
When Jones made music on the waves 

With a Squadron of his own ! 
261 



Home Bound 

Around the straits the white fleet slips 

And bears its sacred spoil 
To lay the Father of our Ships 

Within his native soil; 
Free is the dauntless soul who craves 

The Ocean's blessed boon, 
To be upon the clean blue waves 

With a Squadron of his own ! 



262 



A FATHER'S WELCOME 

("The Little Father will hear us," said the mob, marching to the 
winter palace.) 

Not one among the peasant horde 

That trudged along with patient mind 
But breathed again the hopeful word, 

"The Little Father, he is kind." 
Not one among the tattered throng. 

Pouring from market place and square, 
But murmured, "Though our woes be long, 

The Father will receive our prayer." 

Passing by Cossacks and dragoons 

They saw the sabres and the knouts; 
Above the line of drawn platoons 

The cannon thrust their naked snouts; 
Fixed bayonets, in place to kill, 

Caught from the snows the winter glare — 
But through the throng the whisper still, 

"The Father will receive our prayer." 

Now it is over. On the street 

The undef ending blood is shed. 
The troops move by with cadenced beat, 

The tumbrils bear away the dead. 
Butchered like cattle in the stall, 

Dying the death of slaves who dare 

Murmur against their rightful thrall — 

Thus has the Father heard their jjrayer. 
263 



A Father's Welcome 

Leeches of Russia, mark your fate, 

You who have Hved by blood too long — 
A Giant hammers at your gate 

To right a dynasty of wrong. 
And when the People, fearless grown, 

Swarm through the royal courts and tear 
The rotten timbers from the throne — 

THEN will the Father hear their prayer? 



264 



THREE SONGS OF CHRISTMAS 



In Camp 

Christmas in camp — the icebound river winding 

Through death- white banks among the sheeted pines ; 
Drifts, valleys full, in stern compulsion binding 

The workers to their cabins by the mines. 
Hard hands, but tender hearts about the fire, 

Faces deep lined by elemental strife, 
Eyes quickened by the wandering desire 

That calls the Seeker from his bairns and wife. 
Letters from home, and many a homely token 

To dim the eyes of bronzed and bearded men ; 
For in the Spring the ties of kith are broken, 

But Christmas calls the Seeker home again. 

See, in the East the Natal Planet glows 
Above the death's head of Sierra's snows. 

II 

At Sea 

Christmas at sea — and still the ghost fog lingers. 

Far off Arenas throws her beacon light. 

Or like an angel hfts a glowing finger 

To warn against the perils of the night. 
265 



Three Songs of Christmas 

The mists arise. Old Ocean seems to listen 

To catch the greeting of the kindly stars 
The moon pours forth her scattered beams that glisten 

Among the jewelled frost-points on the spars. 
O wife of mine in that far harbor waiting 

For my return on this home-coming day — 
Why should the Sailor feel the Christmas greeting 

With Port and Love such bitter leagues away ? 

Star of the lonely Mariner, so keep 

Love in the world and Peace upon the deep ! 

Ill 
In Town 

Christmas in town — a carnival of giving, 

The tingling, jingling pulses of the time. 
The feel of snow on furs, the joy of living, 

The sound of sleigh-bells bursting into chime. 
Through yonder pane the firelight flickers jolly 

From happy childish face to tinselled bough; 
Even the pauper wears his sprig of holly — 

Poor he indeed who has not fed by now; 
Cold he indeed who, in the lust for treasure, 

Forgets the loving kinship of the race. 
Who feels no cheer in all the Yuletide pleasure 

That Christ the Child permitted in His grace. 

Hear you the children laughing through the gloam? 
The Sailor has returned, the Seeker's home. 



266 



THE MONSTER 

A MONSTER woman vile of face 
Hurried into the market-place. 

Her robes were yellow, her eyes were red, 
And horror flamed in the words she said. 

And the smooth-clad merchants, as she drew near, 
Shrieked in terror and hid in fear, 

As she soiled their streets with a trail of slime, 
And smeared their coats with her soot and grime. 

And a fever fumed in the market-place 
At the sight of the woman vile of face. 

"A curse," men cried, "on the vandal foul, 
Hag or harpy or witch or ghoul. 

"Dripping mud on our spotless guise, 
Showing shame to our shameless eyes, 

"So that men, with deep disgust. 

Turn from all that they love and trust." 

"Curse her not," said a sayer of sooth, 
"Curse her not, for she is the Truth." 



267 



CLASP HANDS, YE NATIONS! 

(the peace of PORTSMOUTH) 

Clasp hands, ye Nations, and thank God 

The bitter tragedy is done ! 
Corn shall be planted in the sod 

That vengeance long has trod upon. 
Clasp hands, ye Foes, across the path 

By Hfe-blood dampened as by dew; 
The curtains of Almighty wrath 

Roll back and let the sunhght through ! 

In those long camps where armies he 

Between the battle and despair 
I think I hear a mighty sigh 

Rise up to heaven like a prayer: 
"Giver of Peace, our Hves are dear 

And we have felt the pains of men; 
Thank God the blessed end is here 

And we may see our homes again !" 

Peace ! and the grass may grow once mor^ 

Among the gullies and the stones 
Where War might still have festered o'er 

A continent of skulls and bones. 
Peace ! and the fleets of commerce choose 

Safe paths on the untroubled deep 
Where, buried in the crawling ooze. 

The Navies of Misfortune sleep. 



Clasp Hands, Ye Nations 

Clasp hands, ye Nations, in the prayer 

That hell's fierce work for good be done; 
That such a trial by fire may bear 

New splendor to the Rising Sun; 
And that the Peasants of the North 

Through suffering have found a way 
To summon Light and Freedom forth 

To strike the prison-chains away ! 



269 



THE TOY SELLER 

We human folk are toys of Fate, 

Such perishable, gay things ; 
We take our places, small and great, 

Like little wooden playthings; 
Some pretty polls or dainty dolls 

Get naught but admiration, 
While some, like ugly jumping-jacks, 

Are foolish by vocation. 
We cut our antics for a while 

To give the world amusement. 
We walk and talk and bow and smile 

With make-beheve enthusement; 
The pretty toys, the ugly toys, 

Move on by Fate's grim token 
Until the day they're cast away — 

Poor worn-out toys and broken ! 

Toys, toys, toys ! 

Who'll buy my playthings frail? — 
Like human folks they all are jokes, 

And all of them for sale. 
Fate pulls the string, they move and sing 

To show their woes and joys. 

They act their parts with wooden hearts, 

My toys, toys, toys ! 
270 



The Toy Seller 

We human folk are toys of chance, 

Left often where we tumble. 
Some in the robes of princes dance, 

Some walk in garments humble. 
Some toys, caressed and fondly pressed, 

Know sweet affection only; 
Some toys are left in careless hands, 

Neglected things and lonely. 
We grin and ape, we bow and scrape, 

With gestures wildly frantic, 
Until at last, our works run down, 

We can no longer antic; 
Puppets are we — Fate holds the key — 

Our parts by others spoken 
Until the day we're cast away — 

Poor worn-out toys and broken 

Toys, toys, toys ! 

Who'll buy my playthings frail? — 
Like human folks they all are jokes, 

And all of them for sale. 
Fate pulls the string, they move and sing 

To show their woes and joys. 
They act their parts with wooden hearts, 

My toys, toys, toys ! 



271 



WHAT FOOLS THESE IMMORTALS BE! 



CHILD LABOR IN LITERARY SWEATSHOPS 



Among the literary mills 

Where story-books are made, 
I saw a sad, aiiEemic lad 

A-plying of his trade. 
The novel he was working on 

Had such a heavy plot 
If it had spilled, it might have killed 

That willing little tot. 

II 

"O child!" I cried, "this is no place 

For one so very young — 
Take care, beware ! this close, stale air 

May hurt each little lung. 
O lay aside your pen and ink" — 

The Infant shook his head ; 
"Ah, would I might — but I must write 

To earn our daily bread. 

Ill 

"My father, ere he took to drink, 

Had literary skill, 
But since his fall we children ail 

Were prenticed to the mill. 
275 



Child Labor in Literary Sweatshops 

My brother Ben (he's almost ten) 

Turns out the novelettes 
And sister Kate (she's only eight) 

Works over storiettes. 



IV 

"But, being younger than the rest, 

They work me hke a dog 
A-tying knots in half-baked plots 

And building dialogue. 
And sometimes when the trade is rushed 

I labor overtime 
At outdoor scenes for magazines 

And seasonable rhyme. 



V 



"O, sir, to cavil or complain 

We're really very loath; 
Although this here dense atmosphere 

Must surely stunt our growth — 
Perhaps them folks what read our books 

Can guess our fate so crool; 
We want to be like others, free. 

We want to go to school ! " 

VI 

I left the literary mill 

In gloomy mood indeed — 
276 



Child Labor in Literary Sweatshops 

It makes me wild to think some child 

Has written what I read. 
Child-labor must be crushed ! Reform 

Must trace the matter home ! 
(I'll send these views to Mr. Hughes 

And William T, Jerome.) 



277 



IN OUR CURRICULUM 

("Why should not Latin and Greek be discontinued in the 
universities ?" some advanced scientists are inquiring.) 

Hear the New Professor speak, 
"No more Latin, no more Greek. 

"Homer's merely meant to play with — 
Classics must be done away with. 

"No more foolish lectures on 
Socrates and Xenophon. 

"We can easily forego 
^ Anna virumqiie cano.' 

"Students have no time to lose — 
Teach 'em something they can Use. 

"Books like these before 'em thrust: 
'How to Build and Run a Trust.' 

"'How a Senate May be Bought,' 
'How to Steal and Not be Caught.' 

"'Easy Steps to Shearing Flocks,' 
'Irrigating Common Stocks.' 

"Teach the thoughtful theolog 
'Memoirs of a Pious Hog.' 

"Have a sociologic course 

Called 'Respectable Divorce.' 

278 



In Our Curriculum 

"Life is short and time is fast — 
Wherefore monkey with the Past? 

"Make the student fit, I say, 
For this grander, larger day. 

"Mould and train him so he can 
Learn to skin the Other Man. 

"Thus he'll be a power with men 
And a model citizen. 

"And some day when he is greater, 
He'll enrich his Alma Mater." 



279 



THE LITERARY LADY 

The Literary Lady, though she's clever, none can doubt it, 
Too often makes us wonder why she worries so about it, 
And why, when one picks up her book and meekly looks 

upon it, 
Her attitude distinctly says, "Please look at me — I done it ! " 

The Literary Lady, if her novel's a success, 
Occasionally shows it in the manner of her dress, 
As if to ask, "How is it the Immortals do their hair? 
And when I reach the Hall of Fame, pray what am I to 
wear?" 

The Literary Gentleman is otherwise, for he 
Is shrinking, shy, and blushing to a marvellous degree. 
He never talks about himself or writes the kind of stuff 
That gets into the papers for a literary puff. 

And when a sordid Publisher would advertise his book, 
He shrinks from such publicity with dumb, appeahng look; 
And every time a compliment comes smilingly his way 
He shrieks, "Oh, please don't mention it!" and sighs and 
faints away. 

But the Literary Lady is alert, for well she knows 

How one mistake of hers might wreck contemporary prose, 

And as the laurel crown above her shell-hke ear she sticks 

She wears her honors lightly as a wagon-load of bricks. 

280 



The Literary Lady 

There is some strange divinity that shapes her rides and 

walks, 
As now she sits for photographs and interviews and talks, 
And in her friendly sallies with the lawyers and the parson 
She swings the torch of knowledge in a way suggesting arson. 

The Literary Lady racks her fascinating head 
To write her own biography before she's really dead. 
To tell about her Editors, her Letters, and her Cats, 
Her spring and summer Poetry, her fall and winter Hats. 

For proudly she explains to us, as proud her lip is curled, 
"The hand that rocks the cradle rules the (literary) world; 
Therefore I firmly tread — though with the kindliest intent — 
Upon that drooping violet, the Literary Gent." 



281 



ODES FROM THE COSEY CORNER OF HAFIZ 

(translated from the original PERSIAN RUG) 

Allah knows when I was younger, by the spell of Beauty 

smit, 
If my Best Beloved scorned me, I was wont to throw a fit — 
Kismet ! now that I am older I am getting used to it ! 

And at nightfall when the bulbul uttered passion through 

the wood 
Till the Pleiads swooned to morning at Her jalosies I stood — 
(And if I remember rightly, my digestion wasn't good). 

Though a callow Priest of Passion, from the altar I refrained, 
So a Gentlemanly Spinster I have ardently remained, 
Losing hair in just proportion to the flesh that I have gained. 

Ladies, count me not indifferent to all your graces, pray — 
Why, should chivalry require it, I would die for you, I say, 
If (of course) you let me do it in a comfortable way. 

Why should you admire a Lover who lies dying on the grass, 
Stricken by the sword of combat to a rather shapeless mass ? 
Why not ether or (still cheaper) plain illuminating gas? 

Who most feel the most must suffer, and I'm sensitive no 

doubt 
That the thorns are in the hedges and the roses dying out. 



Odes from the Cosey Corner of Hafiz 

I alone know how I suffer. From the Heart? No, from 
the Gout ! 

Wine of Youth and fruits of Eden dropping timely from the 

Tree 
Have a reckless pagan flavor which no longer rouses me 
As I take my Barrie novels with my macaroons and tea. 

So you call yourself "Zuleikha ! " Gad, the name is oriental ! 
Is it purposely erotic or, by purpose, accidental? 
(Do not lean upon that shoulder ! It's rheumatic, so be 
gentle !) 

Yes, I've told my beads to Venus and I know my Kisses 

well ; 
So a word to younger poets who have pretty Odes to sell — 
In erotic verse the secret of the thing is "Kiss and Tell." 

Take my photograph and welcome, but don't ask a lock of 

hair. 
For you'll see, on observation, I have only one to spare 
(Like my teeth, this small collection has been labelled "Very 

rare"). 

As you con my lyric combats where the tender passions duel. 
Think of me who rhymed their romance, made them lan- 
guorous or cruel — 
Think of me in carpet slippers, nibbling toast and sipping 
gruel ! 

And if sighs of disillusion, sweet Zuleikha, come to you, 
What, by all that's sentimental, can an elder poet do? 
It is hard to look like Shelley when one's waistcoat's fifty- 
two ! 

283 



Odes from the Cosy Corner of Hafiz 

Yes, my dear, you're glad you've met me, and to-night when 

you retire 
Waste a thought upon the Poet whose young verses you 

admire, 
And forget that he is old enough to be your father's sire. 



284 



THE LITERARY HORRORS CLUB 

I HAVE no literary style, 

I am no diplomat : 
But those who read "The Clansman" know 

I'm not alone in that, 
And those who read "The Jungle" know 

How one may feed the rooks 
With litter from the slaughter-house 

And turn it into books. 

'Twas in a literary fog 

Beside an inky wave; 
Some rather handsome skeletons 

Were dancing on a grave; 
A somewhat pleasant lynching, too, 

Gave zest to the affair 
When Jack o' London, stalking in, 

Cried thrice, "Ahoy, Sinclair!" 

Then Upton came from Packingtown 

As gay as one can be 
Whose progress is accompanied 

By Reverend Thomas D., 
The latter striking attitudes 

And braying at the moon 

While flourishing a manuscript 

Entitled, "Coon, Coon, Coon!" 
285 



The Literary Horrors Club 

"This is me weekly masterpiece," 

The Reverend Thomas yelled, 
" Though most of it is short on facts 

And some of it's misspelled — 
Yet who'll resist me portraiture 

Of Dixie's golden age 
With forty horrors to the word, 

Three murders to the page?" 

"Enough, enough! read not such stuff!' 

Quoth Upton of Sinclair, 
"I would a bitter tale unfold 

Of Sausage and Despair. 
My hero is a foreigner, 

A stranger yet to soap, 
His name Bzzzzzisqtyozxtistnob 

(Pronounced Bzzuzzixzstnope). 

"The pigs were squealing lustily 

As knives thrust home to kill. 
Our hero stood knee deep in blood 

And ran a sausage-mill, 
When suddenly his foot it slipped, 

And on the knives he fell. 
The sausage-grinder gave a twist. 

And with a horrid yell — " 

There came a stranger weird and wan 

Whose chin required a shave. 

He pulled his slender prophet's beard 

And writhed upon a grave. 
286 



The Literary Horrors Club 

"Alas! she was a cannibal ! " 
He moaned, as if in pain. 

Then all the club arose and cried, 
"Good evening, Mr. Caine!" 

"Her Pa committed suicide 

By biting off his head. 
Her mother saw her uncle's ghost 

And died of fright," he said. 
"So her unpleasant habits seem 

Quite curious to me 
Considering she comes from such 

A pleasant familee." 

There came a Russian accent next 

Behke a popping cork. 
I think 'twas Maxim Gorky who 

Was showing How to Gork; 
But tired of madhouse fantasies 

Right quickly home I gat: 
I have no literary style — 

And thank the Lord for that ! 



287 



BALLADE OF SOUR GRAPES 

Oft do I strive with god-like toil 

On clear Parnassian heights to dwell, 
While Smith, the Author, keen for spoil, 

Carpenters novels just to sell. 

His work is drivel, wot I well. 
But still his mill grinds golden grist 

The while his sales to millions swell — 
The poor. Successful Novelist ! 

With fiendish cunning, smooth as oil, 

He's robbed the master minds pell mell- 
Excerpts from Hardy, Howells, and Doyle 

Are peculated by the ell. 

His heroine's a damosel 
Just like a thousand more I wist — 

How you succeed I cannot tell 
O poor. Successful Novelist ! 

It fills my breast with wild turmoil 

That such fat wit success should spell 
While at Fame's doorstep I must broil 

With no one there to mind the bell. 

In vain my classic goods I yell; 
For when I stop I'm never missed, 

Though friends acknowledge I excel 

The poor, Successful Novelist ! 
288 



Ballade of Sour Grapes 

Envoy 

Public, I would such luck befell 
That my fair genius I might twist 

Like him who claims your I X L, 
The poor, Successful Novelist ! 



289 



A LATER ADVENTURE OF PEGASUS 

When Pegasus' decline began, 

His pinions scarcely fit to drag on, 
The Poet sold him to a man 

Who ran a vegetable wagon. 
This Huckster, little versed in Keats 

And knowing Horace very sparsely, 
Cared less for Byron than for beets 

And less for Pindar than for parsley. 

His wit was slow, 

His brow was low. 
His voice knew not Apollo's uses 

(In selling leeks 

One seldom speaks 
The favored measure of the Muses). 

And so the Huckster hitched the Steed 
Unto his cart and started yelling 

His stock in trade, to meet the need 
Of every cook in every dwelling; 

But lo ! each word he tried to bawl 
Fell into rhymed extravaganzas 

Until at last his huckster's call 

Became complete poetic stanzas-. 
290 



A Later Adventure of Pegasus 

"Who'll buy my corn 

This jocund morn? 
My lettuce green as tropic parrots? 

My marvellous 

Asparagus, 
My radishes, my beans and carrots?" 

So Pegasus with dusty coat 

Tugged till the sweat ran down his dapples, 
And now and then the Huckster wrote 

A sonnet on a peck of apples. 
And now and then he raised a cry 

So rhythmically sublimated 
That folks remarked, in passing by, 

"He's daft or else intoxicated !" 

"Crisp cauliflower! 

Fresh lemons sour ! 
Cantaloupe, spinach, new po-ta-toes ! 

Fresh pease, fresh greens. 

Fresh lima beans. 
And blood-red, sun-kissed ripe to-may-toes ! " 

As night drew on the Horse divine 

Grew most extremely irrit-able 
And inwardly began to pine 

For oats in his Parnassian stable. 
He kicked his master off the dray. 

And snorting like a fiery dragon, 

Spread out his wings and flew away. 

Still harnessed to the Huckster's wagon. 
291 



A Later Adventure of Pegasus 

MORAL 

Though change of heart 

And love of Art 
May make a Poet of a Carter, 

The Muses' colt 

Is apt to bolt 
When harnessed down to trade and barter. 



292 



THE CONFESSIONS OF A GENIUS 



EARLY SIGNS OF GREATNESS 

In a cottage neat but small, 

On a pleasant April mornin' 
I was born. (Correct locale 

For a genius to be born in.) ^^ 

When my parents (they were poor) 
Heard me murmur in my slumbers, 

"Surely two times two are four." 

"Hark!" they cried, "he lisps in numbers 

II 

I AWE THE WORLD 

I WAS first inspired to write 

By a vision, and I saw it 
Point to means whereby I might 

Burst upon the world and awe it. 

Did I awe it ? That did I, 

Just as much as might be lawful; 

For I heard the public cry, 

"Goodness ! aren't his verses awful ! " 
293 



The Confessions of a Genius 
III 

MY WORK MEETS WITH PRAISE 

Next a novel to compose 

I employed my fairest diction, 

Saying to myself, "Here goes — 
For there's merit in my fiction." 

Soon that merit met with praise 
When a publisher wrote, "Sir, it 

Does not suit in many ways — 
This implies no lack of merit." 

IV 

hearty response to my contributions 

Quick success thus made secure, 
My ambitions grew exciting. 

"There are large returns, I'm sure. 
Latent in short-story writing." 

I was right. To book concerns 
Daily stories were epistled — • 

And I got my "large returns" 
Every time the postman whistled. 

V 

I AM LIONIZED 

Flushed by triumphs such as these, 

Honor-garlanded like Dion, 

I was often bid to teas. 

There to be a social lion. 
294 



The Confessions of a Genius 

Here, made prudent by the qualms 
Of a clumsy social bungle, 

I retired among the palms — 
Still the Monarch of the Jungle ! 

VI 

A WORD IN CLOSING 

Thus unburdening my heart 
I have made a public clearance. 

Showing what is gained in Art — 
As in Life — through perseverance. 

If you're really inspired, 

Genius' flower cannot be frosted 
Till the editors are tired — 

And the market is exhausted. 



295 



THE STRIKE IN BOOKLAND 

In fairy Bookland's further mere 

Where future thoughts are congregated, 
The unborn Novels of the Year 

Met and their uUimatum stated. 
"Ere from the Author's teeming brain 

We spring," they said, "full-armed, full-sized, 
We swear by many an inky stain 

We won't, we won't be dramatized." 

A bold Historical Romance 

(Of future date) he smote his thigh: 
"Gadzooks, it were a sore mischance, — 

My cartel, an ye say I lie ! — 
That some betinselled player rogue 

Should drag fair knight to state despised — 
I, good Sir Guy, to be their vogue ! 

Mark me — I won't be dramatized." 

A Tale of Manners (still unwrote) 

Frowned slightly through her gentle poise: 

"Were such a question put to vote, 

One certainly should have one's choice. 

A lady from the printed page. 
However thoroughly revised, 

Is not at home upon the stage — 

I really can't be dramatized." 
296 



The Strike in Bookland 

A future Local Color Book 

Drawled rakishly: "That's straight, my friend. 
There ain't no manager can hook 

This baby out of Gila Bend. 
I guess a Novel ain't a Play 

No more'n a Cow's a Horse. I've sized 
The sitooashun that-a-way. 

You bet / won't be dramatized." 

The Coming Novels took the oath 

And flew into their Authors' brains — 
Will they be false or true, or both? 

Unguessed the question still remains. 
Perhaps some future Scribe will say: 

"The novel I have just devised 
Is not essentially a Play — 

It can't, it won't be dramatized." 



297 



THE QUEST OF THE LOCAL COLOR 

BEAR me away on the wings of the night 
And put me in touch with the stars; 

For it's new local color of which I would write 
And I think that I'll seek it in Mars. 

I've scoured all the earth to its farthest demesne 

For some as-yet-undescribed spot, 
And long have I fared, but yet none have I seen 

Not used long ago in a plot. 

Did I try South America ? Davis has that. 

The Isthmus? O. Henry's been there. 
The Klondyke? Jack London, a fierce autocrat, 

Has gobbled the North as his share. 

Kentucky belongs to the mountaineer. Fox, 

Wyoming was Wister's on sight. 
And Parker has Canada's rivers and rocks 

Fenced in by his own copyright. 

1 ride through the mesas and ranges in vain 
In search of some spot in the West 

Which might have escaped "The Virginian's " train 
"Red Saunders" has gobbled the rest. 

Lo, Duncan has left not a comma to write 

On the sad little Newfoundland isle 
298 



The Quest of the Local Color 

And how can I dream of New England in sight 
Of Mary E. Wilkins's style ? 

I fly to the East, and 'midst races of men, 
With names unpronounceable probe 

Till bang against Kipling I come with my pen; 
For he claims the rest of the globe. 

Then bear me away on ethereal swells 
And put me in touch with the stars — 

But hold up a minute ! There's Herbert G. Wells 
Already located in Mars. 



299 



THE BOOKWORM TURNS 

Upon my bookshelf's dusty edge, 
His tiny suit-case bearing, 

A Bookworm walked across the ledge 
Toward unknown regions faring. 

He turned and faced me with a leer 

Entirely disapproving. 
"I'm getting tired of boarding here, 

And so, you see, I'm moving. 

"I'm easy tempered, heaven knows! 

I like both Swift and Bunyan, 
I'm fond of Omar's poisoned rose 

And Verlaine's poisoned onion. 

"I even manage still to smile 
Upon my fellow-creatures, 

Though bitter mouthfuls of Carlyle 
Distort my placid features. 

"And I conceal my tiny pain, 

(Though feeling rather rummy), 

When Bulwer-Lytton and Mark Twain 
Are warring in my tummy. 

"But here I have undone myself — 

Excuse these wormful grovels — 
300 



The Bookworm Turns 

For I have dined upon a shelf 
Of pessimistic novels. 

"Along a powerful Tolstoi row 

My appetite I whetted, 
Then lingered with d' Annunzio 

And ate — and then regretted. 

"I tried a Hardy sandwich next, — 
My greed I could not bridle, — 

Then nibbled at a Gorky text 
With gusto suicidal. 

"And when my blood was thinned away, 
My soul with horror tainted, 

I bit into an Ibsen play, 

Gave up the ' Ghost ' and fainted. 

"Dyspepsia breeds the misanthrope 
With gloomy thoughts a-riot — 

O give me Doyle, O give me Hope, 
A lighter, simpler diet!" 

And so I saw him stride away 

In heavy marching order 
To where some seaside library 

Invites the summer boarder. 



301 



CONFESSIONS OF A PARODIST 

I HAVE vandalishly parodied "The Raven," 

I have written things that sounded like "The Brook," 
Banal gambols I have made with "The Injun Serenade," 

And I've dandled Kipling's "Vampire" on my hook; 
But in all my dark career of evil-doing 

Certain moments of discretion I have shown, 
I have never tackled "Hiawatha's Wooing" — 

There are chestnuts which it's best to leave alone. 

"Mother Goose's" Httle rhymes I've up-to-dated, 

I have parodied the feet of Bobbie Burns ; 
Though I've never fooled with Homer, I have done some 
stunts with Omar. 

And I've given "Paul Revere" some frightful turns. 
I have served "The Ancient Mariner" warmed over, 

Full of topical allusions, just for spice ; 
But I've never copy made of the mildewed "Light Brigade" 

There are classics which it's best to leave on ice. 

Heaven knows it's often hard to get possession 

Of enough Old Favorites to go around ; 
In despair they sometimes find us writing "Great men all 
remind us," 

Though that verse was long since run into the ground. 
Though for parodies in Paradise I plunder. 

Drag the "Blessed Damosel" from airy heaven, 
May I perish where I fall if I ever have the gall 

To afitlict the world again with "We Are Seven." 

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